Prof Nigel Copner

e: ncopner@glam.ac.uk
t: (01443) 482539
w: http://staff.glam.ac.uk/users/1385-ncopner

I completed my BSc Physics honours at Reading University in 1988, with the highest First class, and subsequently obtained my PhD in Laser Physics from Swansea University in 1992.

I have an extensive patent portfolio (>30) generated during my successful career in Silicon Valley working at JDS Uniphase (Senior Manager, San Jose), DERA (Research Fellow, Malvern), Renishaw and through my work at the University. Many of my key patents have been commercially exploited generating > $10M/year of revenue. The optical switch (US2001006568) patent currently is the biggest selling opto-mechanical switch on the market. The athermal and revolutionary dispersionless interleaver (US2002154314, US2002171908) currently dominates the market and forms the basis of the new DPSK/DQPSK product lines. As a result of my research, I have invented an entirely new interferometer which is now referred to as the '''Copner''' Interferometer (US61 25220 (A)). In addition, my innovative approach to frequency doubling (US2004131093) forms the basis of JDS Uniphase'''s blue note laser which is currently their biggest selling new laser product.

Throughout my research work I have endeavoured to encourage creativity and have developed many ideas through to highly manufacturable, robust prototypes that pass the exhaustive Telecordia reliability specification 1221.

During my research work at DERA (Malvern) I won a NMSPU contract (Σ500k) to research new primary standards for laser RIN and Chirp. This work was completed successfully in 1994 with the filing of a number of key patents (US6320179 (B1)). My research work with Renishaw enabled me to file innovative ways of sensing laser frequency changes (US6345060 (B1)) without the normal degrading effects of vibration and also established new phase modulating concepts for narrowing the linewidth of lasers (WO9831081 (A1)). Recently, within Academia, I have initiated a major research project (Σ2M) funded by the TSB based on my IP (US2007230532) which highlights the efficiency gains achieved if multimode second harmonic generation occurs within a laser cavity. This project demonstrated exceptional performance recently when over 1.3W of green speckle free light was seen. The closing DBERR representative stated that this project was the best that he had seen with all parties appearing to gain enormously from the research work. Further, based on my novel tuneable laser concept (WO2009081160 (A1)) a major CIRP project (Σ540k) has been won. This new concept deploys a frequency tuning element that simultaneously adjusts both laser frequency and cavity length changes to eliminate mode-hops. This concept is expected to open the metrology sector to higher volume applications in the medical sector etc. In addition, I have initiated a Carbon Trust bid with Lomox Ltd for groundbreaking OLED research which should lead to more efficient general lighting and eventually displays. This Σ2.5M project started on 1st Jan 2011. Further, I managed to win an EPSRC Case PhD grant (Σ100k) with Oclaro to research novel dispersion compensation for optical networks. Recently also a Σ170k KTP project was won with Chromogenexs on new light sources for medical applications. In addition, as of feb 3rd 2011 an EPSRC project (Σ450k) has been awarded to research my novel laser tuning concepts. From the 1st Sept have a new contract with EADS (Σ1M) for the research of novel concepts for free space communications to UAVs.

I am also a founder of a new local laser company, Cymtec Ltd which is currently targeting > Σ4M revenue within 3-4 years based on innovative way of multiplexing LEDs of differing wavelengths. This technology is expected to have a significant impact in the projection display and endoscope markets. I am also a technical adviser to Global Laser, Oclaro Inc, Enterprise Ireland and Optoplex Inc. In addition, I have a paid visiting chair to the Xian Institute in China. I support the teaching in the department by taking on many Msc students and being module leader to an Msc (sustainable lighting) and an undergraduate module on Lighting Principles. I also have inititated a series of lectures to schools that aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. These lectures have been given in the scholl environment and have been very popular. To be conferred to a Chair of Optoelectronics with an industrial research bias will greatly enhance my group'''s profile and enhance the funding opportunities available.

Prof Nigel Copner is (or has formerly been) affiliated with Glamorgan Mobile Computing Communications and Networking, Integrated Communications Research Centre, University of Glamorgan and University of Glamorgan.

Areas of Expertise

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