Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy
Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Inline Coherent Imaging (ICI) Technology Goes Global!

Posted: January 19, 2018

ICI technology co-developed with Prof. Fraser goes global

The Laser Depth Dynamics team, including chief technical officer and co-founder Paul Webster (Sc'06, PhD'13), third from the left in the front row. 
(Image: University Communications of Queen's Gazette)

Recently, Queen's startup company Laser Depth Dynamics (LDD) was purchased by IPG Photonics Corporation, the world leader in high-performance fibre lasers and amplifiers. LDD was founded in Kingston 2012 by Paul Webster (Sc'06, PhD'13) and Roger Bowes (Sc'92), with the support of Prof. James Fraser, Queen's PARTEQ Innovations (now part of the Queen’s Office of Partnerships and Innovation). Dr. Webster, who is a graduate of Queen's Engineering Physics, developed the key LDD technology called Inline Coherent Imaging (ICI) during his PhD under the supervision of Prof. James Fraser in the Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy. The ICI technology allows for direct measurement of weld penetration depth for laser welding. This is done using a near-infrared measurement beam to ensure high quality in real-time. IPG Photonics Corporation aims to incorporate LDD’s technology into its laser welding solutions to drive adoption of this advanced technology throughout manufacturing of metal parts.

With the purchase, Laser Depth Dynamics will become IPG Photonics (Canada), and will remain in Kingston. About half of its employees are Queen’s graduates, with many being graduates of the Engineering Physics program and/or the graduate program in Engineering Physics at Queen's. Dr. Webster believes they may well add more Queen’s talent in the future!

This is an example of a research idea, identified and advanced by a student and professor, funded by research grants, and, with support from the university’s technology transfer team, was patented, spun-off as a business, and was successfully commercialized. This story showcases the innovation ecosystem at work here at Queen’s, the important role our Office of Partnerships and Innovation plays in fostering economic growth, and how critical the support of the Ontario government is for our innovation programs. We congratulate the Laser Depth Dynamics team on this exciting news as they become part of a global leader in its field.”—John Fisher, Interim Vice-Principal (Research) 

For the full detailed news, visit Queen's Gazette article.