Aerospace/Military/HS

Axsun to Expand Industrial Spectroscopy, Homeland Security and Communications

November 8, 2006

New $15 million Series D funding enables initiative to expand upon Axsun's MEMS-based spectral engine. A version of it, a Near InfraRed (NIR) spectrometer for process monitoring applications, won an R&D 100 Award and a Pittcon Editors' Choice Award in 2004.


BILLERICA, Mass., Nov. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Axsun Technologies Inc., a manufacturer of MEMS-based micro-optoelectronic "spectral engines," announced today the closure of a $15M financing round. Electro Scientific Industries (ESI) Inc., supplier of production laser systems for microengineering applications, led the Series D equity round, Axsun will use the proceeds to enhance its core "spectral engine" offerings in industrial process spectroscopy, including the PAT Pharmaceutical, homeland security and optical communications markets.

Axsun's MEMS-based "spectral engine," characterized by high performance in an extremely small package, was introduced in 2002 to the optical communications market and has earned dominant market share position in the optical channel monitor space. In 2004, the company adapted its core "spectral engine," introducing a Near InfraRed (NIR) spectrometer for process monitoring applications, which won the prestigious R&D 100 Award as well as the Pittcon Editors' Choice Award as one of the most innovative new products of the year. In 2006 Axsun, extended its micro-optical platform, introducing a unique Raman spectrometer engine targeted at identifying unknown substances in the growing homeland security market.

"Axsun's unique NIR and Raman spectrometers are now seeing the same broad market acceptance enjoyed by our optical channel monitors in the telecom market," commented Axsun founder and CEO Dale Flanders. "Potential applications extend into a number of new and exciting markets. This round of funding, along with a strong relationship with ESI will allow us to further broaden the reach of this very flexible platform."

In addition to the funding, Axsun announced today that it had entered into a Strategic Agreement with ESI to explore and develop applications based on Axsun's "spectral engines."

"Axsun has proven that its core MEMS optical platform extends well beyond the optical channel monitor market into a range of industries including several where there is synergy with ESI's technology," says ESI. "For these applications, spectroscopic sensors can deliver the chemical information essential in addressing critical manufacturing challenges. We look forward to supporting this team as they continue to provide innovative, real-world spectroscopic solutions."

About Axsun Technologies
Axsun Technologies, Inc., established in 1998, develops and manufactures MEMS-based micro-optical spectrometers and optical channel monitors for pharmaceutical, chemical and petrochemical, homeland security and telecom network applications. Through its expertise in micro-optics, packaging and precision engineering, Axsun has pioneered an entirely new class of high-performance, miniaturized spectroscopic instruments and devices enabling a dramatic shift from lab based measurements to on-line and at-line measurements, without compromising performance. Further information can be found at http://www.axsun.com/.

About ESI, Inc.ESI is a pioneer and leading supplier of world-class production laser systems that help its microelectronics customers achieve compelling yield and productivity gains. The company's industry-leading, application-specific products enhance electronic-device performance in three key sectors- semiconductors, components and electronic interconnect-by enabling precision fine-tuning of device microfeatures in high-volume manufacturing environments. Founded in 1944, ESI is headquartered in Portland, Ore.
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