Our researchers work in a consultancy role, advising and sharing their experience and knowledge with a wide range of industrial partners -  including some of our spin out companies.

Contact us at in the first instance.

Industry Events

We hold regular Industry Days providing industry representatives with the opportunity to engage with our researchers and learn about their latest developments, as well as the benefits of collaborative work.

For details contact us at

Patents is a virtue...

Did you know? Around 20 patents are filed every year as a result of the research carried out at the ORC.

Innovation & Business

We foster a strong culture of innovation at the ORC, forging close industry links, which have resulted in a raft of spin-out companies. We typically file over 20 patents a year and much of our work has an immediate impact within a diverse range of industries, and sometimes, even represents an entirely new market. 

Industry links

We have excellent relationships with business and industry both in the UK and internationally, providing support through joint research projects, consultancy, commercialisation of research, knowledge transfer and use of our facilities. 

As a member of the South East Photonics Network (SEPNET), we are in regular contact with over 200 photonics related companies and institutions based in the South East of England.

We are also highly involved in Innovation China UK, connecting five UK universities and over twenty Chinese partner institutions with a view to enhancing knowledge exchange, and facilitating technology transfer, commercialization and new collaborative opportunities. 

For small companies that don't have their own research and development departments, having an academic working in your company can generate new ideas and embed new knowledge directly into your workforce.

Covesion is an innovative optoelectronics company which produces wavelength conversion crystals which are used to transform the colour of laser light.

The company works with Southampton's Optoelectronics Research Centre to find ways of making laser crystal technology more versatile for an ever widening range of applications.


Over the years we have collaborated with a number of national and international industry partners including:

Specialist facilities

We have a number of state-of-the-art laboratories and cleanrooms that are available for hire by other academic institutions as well as scientists from industry or other research establishments, including:

Spin-out companies

There are over ten companies in the Southampton area with their roots in the ORC, creating a ‘Light Valley’ of successful photonics companies. While much of the research we do is conducted without a particular commercial activity in mind, the nature of the work naturally leads to a great deal of innovation that is often commercially exploitable. 

We have been extraordinarily successful in our commercial endeavours. Our spin-out companies maintain strong links with us, sponsoring research and PhD students, providing a route through to the marketplace for new ideas, applications and technology. ORC spin-out companies include:

  • CHG Southampton - Launched to develop and exploit commercial opportunities of novel glasses, in particular chalcogenide materials 
  • Covesion - Develops and sells non-linear optical technologies based on PPLN
  • Fianium - Fibre laser company manufacturing and developing ultra-fast, high power laser systems
  • Fibercore - Manufactures and supplies speciality optical fibre
  • Mesophotonics - Photonic crystal technology in the fields of microphotonics, telecommunications and computing 
  • Photon Kinetics - A leading supplier of measurement solutions for the optical fibre, cable and component manufacturing industry
  • Point Source - Designs and manufactures high performance fiber optic laser delivery systems and lasers for commercial applications in biotechnology and semiconductor manufacturing
  • Sensa -The world’s leading provider of fiber optic temperature sensing solutions
  • Smart Fibres - Optical fiber sensor solutions for testing, design validation, condition monitoring and smart structures
  • Southampton Photonics Inc -Develops and manufactures high power fibre lasers for a wide variety of marking and micromachining applications 
  • Stratophase - Optical solutions via laser wavelength conversion and integrated optical circuit technology, particularly Bragg gratings


The benefits to our society, and in particular to British industry, are clear in what’s been achieved at the University of Southampton and the ORC in particular. - John O'Reilly, Chief Executive of EPSRC

Working with the ORC

We work hard on our links with business locally, across the UK and the rest of the world. This takes many forms, from large-scale projects to more informal advice and consultancy.

If you'd like to talk to us about what we can do for you, or if you'd like to hear of events you can attend, please contact us.

Copyright University of Southampton 2006