(Optics.org) Sensor specialist Sick and wholly-owned Trumpf subsidiary Q.ANT have announced that they are to work together on the development of quantum optical sensors.
“Sick is expanding its position as a worldwide technology leader in the sensor sector by embarking on the production of quantum sensors. Quantum sensors are a key technology for the future of industry,” said Robert Bauer, Chairman of the Executive Board of Sick AG.
The two high-tech companies will cooperate to develop quantum technology for sensors for industrial use. Quantum sensors enable measurements with unprecedented accuracy, say the partners. The signing of the agreement this month was preceded by a successful functional test of the world’s first quantum optical sensor for serial production.
Using laser light, quantum sensors permit highly efficient measurements that would be impossible with conventional processes. “Quantum technology represents the next level for sensors because it shifts hitherto firmly established technical limits,” said Niels Syassen, Senior Vice President R&D at SICK and responsible for the project. “Using quantum effects, additional details can be perceived from signal noise where, up to now, no specific signals would have been measureable. This enables the measurement of particles that are about two hundred times smaller than the width of a human hair.” The quantum sensors will initially be used for analyzing substances in air.
Sick will be responsible for application development and sales of the product; Trumpf subsidiary Q.ANT takes on production of the measurement technology – and thus the sensor’s core technology.
“Quantum technology is an enormous opportunity for German and European industry,” said Peter Leibinger, Chief Technology Officer at Trumpf. “This will be the first time that the partnership between our two high-tech companies will involve a product for serial production.