WXXI AM News

photonics

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State message includes a proposal to set aside money to promote the photonics effort in the Rochester area.

Cuomo wants to allocate $30 million toward marketing and providing incentives for photonics companies thinking of locating in the Rochester area.

The state has already committed $250 million toward the AIM Photonics initiative, and the $30 million would be part of that.

State and local officials say they are seeing a lot of interest in a state-funded competition designed to help startup companies in the optics, photonics and imaging industries in Rochester.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says that Luminate NY, the name of the competition announced earlier this year, has received interest from more than 100 applicants from around the world.

A program designed to grow the local photonics industry is getting a new name as it officially launches in Rochester. 

It started the year as the Photonics Venture Challenge, when Governor Andrew Cuomo first announced it earlier this year. But now the competition, funded by $10 million through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, has been re-named Luminate NY.

The competition encourages optics, imaging and photonics companies from around the country who have entrepreneurial ideas.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says the AIM Photonics project in Rochester is in the final planning stages to begin construction this summer.

Empire State Development’s Board of directors on Friday approved an $81 million dollar grant to equip and operate the Testing, Assembly and Packaging or “TAP “ facility.

That is located on Lake Avenue in Rochester at a former Kodak building at the Eastman Business park.  The building is owned by ON Semiconductor.

The state grant will be used for machinery, tools and other equipment.

The latest announcement from the AIM Photonics board about that initiative in Rochester involves the development of electronic sensors that  can be used  by the military and for various civilian applications.

Officials say the new Defense Department project will help researchers develop sensors that can be used for things like environmental monitoring, diagnosing disease, ensuring food safety and detecting chemical and biological weapons.

Randy Gorbman reports on the AIM-Photonics project in Rochester has decided on where their local headquarters will be. Also, Kodak is looking to sell their Prosper commercial inkjet business to a local company you may know. They’re called Xerox.

A top local official is still confident about the overall photonics rollout in the Rochester area, despite a question raised by a statement this week by one of the companies that had planned to put operations in Rochester.

SASHA-ANN SIMONS/ WXXI NEWS

With millions in federal and state funding, Rochester is poised to become a photonics research and manufacturing hub.

And with thousands of new jobs possible, local colleges are preparing their students now to build their careers in the industry.

At Monroe Community College, many more students are enrolling in the optics program. 

East High School | University of Rochester

You could call it the most watched school in Rochester. East High School is kicking off year two in its collaboration with the University of Rochester. On this edition of Need to Know we learn what’s in store for this new school year as this innovative intervention continues to unfold.

Also on the show, photonics is now in Rochester and eventually the jobs promised will be here too. We’ll tell you how local schools are preparing their students to cash in on the booming industry.

And in the midst of continued turmoil and unrest in South Sudan, hope springs forth. How the Rochester-South Sudan partnership is bringing new opportunities to the youth of Mayan-Abun.

The ongoing efforts to ramp up photonics manufacturing in the Rochester area has taken another step forward.

The New York State Photonics Board, which is coordinating the state’s financial investment in photonics, has hired a real estate firm that does site selection work to  recommend a location for what is going to be a testing, assembly and packaging facility.

The board hired Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, which is headquartered in New York City.

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