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LightPath Technologies Announces Commercial Availability of First BlackDiamond-NRL Based New Infrared Glass, BDNL-4

Thursday, 04 April 2024 08:30 AM

LightPath Technologies, Inc.

New Material is Critical to Industry Efforts to Replace Germanium in Infrared Optics

ORLANDO, FL / ACCESSWIRE / April 4, 2024 / LightPath Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:LPTH) ("LightPath," the "Company," or "we"), a leading vertically integrated global manufacturer and integrator of proprietary optical and infrared technologies, today announced the commercial launch of its first new BlackDiamond-NRL infrared glass, BDNL-4, a key material in the chalcogenide glass series licensed from the US Naval Research Laboratories (NRL) as a substitute for Germanium.

BDNL-4 is a new material that exhibits a negative thermo-optic coefficient, an important attribute for making systems athermalized, enabling the design of devices that are unaffected by temperature changes. BDNL-4 is also a true multi-spectral material that can be used across SWIR, MWIR and LWIR imaging bands. As with all its Chalcogenide materials, LightPath offers antireflective and protective DLC coatings for the new BDNL-4 materials. Following years of development at NRL, BDNL-4 is licensed exclusively to LightPath.

To qualify BDNL-4, the manufacturing-readiness process and tests included extensive tests and measurements of a large number of samples from different production batches, in accordance with the plan for developing alternatives to Germanium set forth and sponsored by US Defense Department ("DoD") via the Defense Logistics Agency ("DLA"). BDNL-4 is being produced in the same facility utilizing the equipment LightPath uses to produce its BD-6 infrared chalcogenide glass.

"This is the first material from those developed at NRL to be made available as part of our partnership with the DoD to commercialize Germanium substitutes," said Sam Rubin, President and Chief Executive Officer of LightPath. "The Chinese export restrictions on Germanium acted as a key catalyst for BDNL-4 to be produced in the USA using raw ingredients commonly available from multiple friendly countries. By providing alternatives like BDNL-4 for use in optics, more Germanium will also be freed up for other industries such as semiconductors. Currently it is estimated that 25% of Germanium is used in infrared optics.

"BDNL-4 not only replaces Germanium but offers advantages versus Germanium. By having a negative thermo-optic coefficient, that is the change of the optical index as a function of temperature, BDNL-4 enables optical designers to design optical systems that are optically and passively compensated for changes in temperature. This is important for example in airborne systems where today, changes in ambient temperature at different altitudes require refocusing the cameras to compensate for this, or even in some of the new automotive ADAS system utilizing thermal imaging, which must be able to operate in all temperatures vehicles might be used in.

"With the commercial launch we expect BDNL-4 will become an important material for thermal cameras in drones and other systems that must operate across a large range of temperatures. We expect to see strong demand for the material because of its unique properties and the solution it provides in light of export restrictions on Germanium and Gallium by China," concluded Rubin.

A full data set of specification is available for optical designers, including Zemax files and measurement data from LightPath.

About LightPath Technologies

LightPath Technologies, Inc. is a leading global, vertically integrated provider of optics, photonics and infrared solutions for the industrial, commercial, defense, telecommunications, and medical industries. LightPath designs and manufactures proprietary optical and infrared components including molded glass aspheric lenses and assemblies, custom molded glass freeform lenses, infrared lenses and thermal imaging assemblies, fused fiber collimators, and proprietary Black Diamondâ„¢ ("BD6") chalcogenide-based glass lenses. LightPath also offers custom optical assemblies, including full engineering design support. The Company is headquartered in Orlando, Florida, with manufacturing and sales offices in Dallas Texas, Latvia and China.

LightPath's wholly-owned subsidiary, Visimid Technologies, was acquired in July 2023, and specializes in the design and development of customized infrared cameras, for the industrial and defense industries. Such customized cameras are often sold together with customized optical assemblies from LightPath.

LightPath's wholly-owned subsidiary, ISP Optics Corporation, manufactures a full range of infrared products from high-performance MWIR and LWIR lenses and lens assemblies. ISP's infrared lens assembly product line includes athermal lens systems used in cooled and un-cooled thermal imaging cameras. Manufacturing is performed in-house to provide precision optical components including spherical, aspherical and diffractive coated infrared lenses.

For more information on LightPath and its businesses, please visit

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes statements that constitute forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may be identified by the use of words such as "forecast," "guidance," "plan," "estimate," "will," "would," "project," "maintain," "intend," "expect," "anticipate," "prospect," "strategy," "future," "likely," "may," "should," "believe," "continue," "opportunity," "potential," and other similar expressions that predict or indicate future events or trends or that are not statements of historical matters. These forward-looking statements are based on information available at the time the statements are made and/or management's good faith belief as of that time with respect to future events and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or suggested by the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the impact of varying demand for the Company products; the ability of the Company to obtain needed raw materials and components from its suppliers; actions governments, businesses, and individuals take in response to the pandemic, including restrictions on onsite commercial interactions; general economic uncertainty in key global markets and a worsening of global economic conditions or low levels of economic growth; geopolitical tensions, the Russian-Ukraine conflict, and the Hamas/Israel war; the effects of steps that the Company could take to reduce operating costs; the inability of the Company to sustain profitable sales growth, convert inventory to cash, or reduce its costs to maintain competitive prices for its products; circumstances or developments that may make the Company unable to implement or realize the anticipated benefits, or that may increase the costs, of its current and planned business initiatives; and those factors detailed by LightPath Technologies, Inc. in its public filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on 10-Q. Should one or more of these risks, uncertainties, or facts materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those indicated or anticipated by the forward-looking statements contained herein. Accordingly, you are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date they are made. Forward-looking statements should not be read as a guarantee of future performance or results and will not necessarily be accurate indications of the times at, or by, which such performance or results will be achieved. Except as required under the federal securities laws and the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission, we do not have any intention or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Brian M. Prenoveau, CFA
MZ Group - MZ North America
[email protected]
+561 489 5315

SOURCE: LightPath Technologies, Inc.

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