I3A - Instituto de Investigación en Ingeniería de Aragón

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About us
GTFPhotonic Technologies Group
http://gtf.unizar.es/index_es.php

The Photonic Technologies Group (GTF) is registered as Quality Applied Research Group by the Regional Government of Aragón. This reflects the personality of the group, focused on the practical application of science, and at the same time speaks about the consistency and quality of our research along the years. Accordingly, the partnership with private companies is one of the main traits of our work. GTF’s main idea is to lean on solid basic research to master the applied research, with the aim to generate solutions that bring value to society through a direct contact with the market and with the scientific and industrial state-of-the-art.

Research Lines

Industrial Technologies

Industrial Optical/Optoelectronics Sensors, Systems and Instruments
  • Optical sensors and integrated optics: research and design of integrated optical waveguides. Application to optical (mainly optochemical) sensors. Contact: Íñigo Salinas...
  • Optical sensors and integrated optics: research and design of integrated optical waveguides. Application to optical (mainly optochemical) sensors. Contact: Íñigo Salinas. (isalinas@unizar.es).
  • Optical instrumentation: complete development of field and laboratory optical equipment (spectrophotometers, reflectometers) specifically designed to meet the requirements of different industrial processes. Our work has been mainly related, but not limited, to the areas of water quality analysis, thermosolar power plants and glass coatings. Contact: Rafael Alonso and Carlos Heras. (ralonso@unizar.es and cdheras@unizar.es).
  • Optical systems for domestic induction hobs: development of IR contact-less systems to measure, in real time, the temperature of cooking vessels. Contact: Rafael Alonso and Carlos Heras. (ralonso@unizar.es and cdheras@unizar.es)
Multilayer Optical Coatings

The overall aim of this research line is the development of any new high-performance structure commercially demanded. In particular, GTF is currently working on these specific...

The overall aim of this research line is the development of any new high-performance structure commercially demanded. In particular, GTF is currently working on these specific areas:

  • Coatings on glass for optical and energy control applied to architecture, transport and agriculture: thermal insulation, improved electromagnetic radiation transmission properties, lightweight glasses, signaling glassworks, electronic control function glass, solar radiation control on polymeric coverings for greenhouses, etc.
  • Multilayer coatings on ceramic-glasses of induction hobs: engraved electric circuitry for sensing, illumination or signaling purposes.
  • Coatings for solar power plant systems: development of new selective absorbance coatings for collecting tubes and high-efficiency low-cost reflectors for its use in thermal energy solar plants.
  • Thin-film CIGS technology photovoltaic panels.
Contact: Javier Pelayo and Rafael Alonso (pelayo@unizar.es and ralonso@unizar.es).

Key Projects

Industrial Technologies

Logic gates matrices based on semiconductor optical amplifiers

Grant Number: TEC2010-19418
Study of active and passive integrated photonic circuits for the design of all-optical digital optical signal processing.

Grant Number: TEC2010-19418
Study of active and passive integrated photonic circuits for the design of all-optical digital optical signal processing.

Sun and vision for today’s thermal energy (SOLVENTA)

Grant Number: IPT-2011-1425-920000. INNPACTO program.
Design, construction and field validation of several optical/opto-electronics instruments for performance characterization of the...

Grant Number: IPT-2011-1425-920000. INNPACTO program.
Design, construction and field validation of several optical/opto-electronics instruments for performance characterization of the elements installed in parabolic and tower concentration thermosolar power plants.
The instruments are tested in the thermosolar power plant Solnova I and II from the Abengoa group in Sanlúcar la Mayor (Seville).

Development of high performance multilayer structures by combining polymeric and glassy sheets for transport, security and defense (EMAP)

Grant Number: IPT-2011-1273-420000. INNPACTO program.
Development of new optical multilayers , such as new glazings with optimal thermal insulation and solar control properties for...

Grant Number: IPT-2011-1273-420000. INNPACTO program.
Development of new optical multilayers , such as new glazings with optimal thermal insulation and solar control properties for transportation and edification purposes, glazings with improved electromagnetic radiation transmission properties, lightweight glasses, signaling glassworks, electronic control function glass, etc. Design of specific coatings for solar radiation control on polymeric coverings for greenhouses.

Next generation optical network monitoring

Grant Number: TEC2010-17869
Application of the BOSA spectroscopic technique developed by GTF to the performance analysis of next generation optical fiber networks.

Grant Number: TEC2010-17869
Application of the BOSA spectroscopic technique developed by GTF to the performance analysis of next generation optical fiber networks.

Key Technologies

Industrial Technologies

Design and fabrication of field and laboratory optical instrumentation

End to end design and fabrication of tailor-made field and laboratory optical instrumentation, including software, mechanics, optics and electronics. Successful examples include equipment for...

End to end design and fabrication of tailor-made field and laboratory optical instrumentation, including software, mechanics, optics and electronics. Successful examples include equipment for water quality spectroscopic analysis, multilayer glass coating inspection and thermosolar power plants characterization.

Design of optical communications laboratory equipment

Design and development of laboratory systems for linear and non-linear parameters measurement of optical fiber transmission systems, waveguides and optical fiber cables.

Design and development of laboratory systems for linear and non-linear parameters measurement of optical fiber transmission systems, waveguides and optical fiber cables.

Multilayer deposition techniques

End to end design and fabrication of multilayer coatings by Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) in our own facilities for a variety of applications: thin-film photovoltaic panels, selective-absorption...

End to end design and fabrication of multilayer coatings by Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) in our own facilities for a variety of applications: thin-film photovoltaic panels, selective-absorption coatings and reflective layers for thermosolar plants, coatings for ceramic glass cooktops, solar control in buildings and vehicles, etc.

Design of plastic optical fiber networks

Design of low cost domotic networks based on plastic optical fiber. Complete characterization of plastic optical fibers.

Design of low cost domotic networks based on plastic optical fiber. Complete characterization of plastic optical fibers.

Analysis of optical communication networks

Extensive instrumentation and know-how for the analysis of optical communication networks: tunable lasers, optical amplifiers, high resolution spectrum analyzers in electrical and optical domain,...

Extensive instrumentation and know-how for the analysis of optical communication networks: tunable lasers, optical amplifiers, high resolution spectrum analyzers in electrical and optical domain, Bit Error Rate analyzers for network consulting, high frequency rate oscilloscope (65GHz) for eye diagram measurement, etc. Characterization and performance monitoring in “all-optic” communication systems for high modulation rates (>40GHz) and advanced modulation formats, including wavelength and polarization multiplexing.

Design, analysis and experimental characterization of active/passive integrated photonic circuits

Design, analysis and experimental characterization of active/passive integrated photonic circuits for applications such as “all-optical” processing of digital optical signals (communications,...

Design, analysis and experimental characterization of active/passive integrated photonic circuits for applications such as “all-optical” processing of digital optical signals (communications, logic…) or optical sensors.

Optical fiber cables manufacturing

Engineering consulting for optical fiber cables manufacturing. Development of characterization and quality control equipment.

Engineering consulting for optical fiber cables manufacturing. Development of characterization and quality control equipment.

Success Cases

Industrial Technologies

GTF & GEPM & BSH Electrodomésticos España S.A.

GTF collaborates as well with the Grupo de Electrónica de Potencia y Microelectrónica (GEPM) of the I3A in the domestic induction heating knowledge and technology transfer to the BSH group, in...

GTF collaborates as well with the Grupo de Electrónica de Potencia y Microelectrónica (GEPM) of the I3A in the domestic induction heating knowledge and technology transfer to the BSH group, in partnership the R&D global center for this product, located in Zaragoza. This work focuses on:

  • Design, electromagnetic analysis and experimental characterization of induction systems.
  • Development of systems to measure the energetic efficiency of inductors.
GTF & BSH Electrodomésticos España S.A.

The optical layers research line has allowed the birth of another research line with the company BSH Electrodomésticos España S.A. (http://www.bsh-group.es/...

The optical layers research line has allowed the birth of another research line with the company BSH Electrodomésticos España S.A. (http://www.bsh-group.es/). Its goal is the manufacture of new induction ceramic-glass with multilayer coatings so its aesthetic appearance can be modified and new functionalities can be introduced. Industrial prototypes have already been manufactured by the Ariño-Duglass. These prototypes are multilayer coatings which present “stainless steel” appearance and “black” appearance. They are being tested for their industrial verification. As a result of this collaboration, an intellectual property registry process has started with the currently published patents WO2011020719(A1), WO2011020721(A1) y WO2011020718(A1), as well as several already requested applications.
The collaboration between BSH and the GTF has been expanded to the study and development of an IR contact-less systems to measure, in real time, the temperature of cooking vessels in order to produce a thermal control system for cooking vessels in automatic cooking processes. Presently 15 patent requests related to this system have been requested.
 

GTF & Centro Nacional de Energías Renovables (CENER)

Laboratory equipment has been developed in partnership with the Centro Nacional de Energías Renovables (CENER). This laboratory equipment is used to characterize the spectral reflection/...

Laboratory equipment has been developed in partnership with the Centro Nacional de Energías Renovables (CENER). This laboratory equipment is used to characterize the spectral reflection/transmission coefficient of the solar receiver tubes of the cilynder parabolic collectors used in thermosolar power stations.

GTF & Abengoa Solar N.T.

The GTF has a stable, long term relationship with Abengoa Solar N.T. (http://www.abengoasolar.com/) concerning  the development of selective absorption...

The GTF has a stable, long term relationship with Abengoa Solar N.T. (http://www.abengoasolar.com/) concerning  the development of selective absorption coatings used in absorbing tubes of cylindrical-parabolic solar collectors and in the development of portable equipment to measure the reflectance of flat and curved mirrors, which are presently in industrialization stage. The group is also developing portable equipment to measure the transmittance/reflectance of the solar tube receivers. As a result of this collaboration an intellectual property registry process has started with the currently published patents WO2011104401(A1), ES2366290(A1) and WO2012010724(A1).
Furthermore, coatings with an absorbance higher than 95% have been developed. This has led to an already published international patent (WO2010046509(A1)) and which is currently in granting stage. Presently, auxiliary equipment is being developed to optically and thermally measure the cylindrical parabolic and the tower concentrating collectors.
New thin layered photovoltaic panels with CIGS technology are also being developed in partnership with another division of the aforementioned company Abengoa Solar N.T.

GTF & ADASA Sistemas S.A.U.

This collaboration with the company Adasa Sistemas S.A.U. (http://www.adasasistemas.com/, previously belonging to the AgBar business group) has lead to...

This collaboration with the company Adasa Sistemas S.A.U. (http://www.adasasistemas.com/, previously belonging to the AgBar business group) has lead to the development and commercialization of absorption and fluorescence spectrophotometers for in situ water quality analysis. More specifically, these devices are capable to determine concentrations of organic matter, nitrate, suspended matter causing turbidity and different algae groups. A portable fluorometer, in probe configuration, has also been developed for green and blue-green algae concentration assessment by means of their distinct fluorescent properties. We have also designed a probe fluorometer for dissolved oxygen concentration determination using the fluorescence quenching by a ruthenium complex trapped in a polymeric membrane. These equipment developments have lead to a patent, ES2334426 (B1), in which the inventors are members from the GTF, but whose ownership belongs to ADASA. Some of the measurement equipment developed, such as commercial  model “AquaUV-CMC”, are installed and working at control stations conforming the Hydrologic Information Automatic Systems in several Spanish water basins, controlling basic water quality parameters.

GTF & Aragon Photonics Labs S.L.

The GTF, together with the company Aragon Photonics Labs S.L. (http://www.aragonphotonics.com/), has developed the BOSA and BOSA-Phase systems, which...

The GTF, together with the company Aragon Photonics Labs S.L. (http://www.aragonphotonics.com/), has developed the BOSA and BOSA-Phase systems, which are measurement equipment used in optical communication systems, manufactured and marketed by the company Aragon Photonics Labs, SLU. Technically, these are high-performance and ultra-high resolution optical spectra analyzers (100-fold resolution over conventional devices), having an application not only in academic and business R&D, but also for optical communication systems component production (lasers, modulators, etc.). In 2008 the BOSA was honored with a prestigious PRISM AWARD for innovation in Photonics, given at the USA by the international society for optics and photonics (SPIE) and Laurin Publishing. BOSA equipment are installed and in use at USA, Japan, Spain, Germany, France, Hungary… and also in reputed institutions such as MIT, KDDI R&D in Japan, or Johns Hopkins University.
Two patents have been developed: WO2004044538 and WO2007132030 which protect the technology used in the BOSA and BOSA-Phase equipment.

GTF & Ariño Duglass S.A.

GTF has accomplished several technological transference projects in the area of optical coatings, together with some leading companies working in this area, particularly the aragonese company...

GTF has accomplished several technological transference projects in the area of optical coatings, together with some leading companies working in this area, particularly the aragonese company Ariño-Duglass (http://www.duglass.com/). On one hand, this transference has been oriented towards the development of new multilayer coatings and improvement of their manufacturing process. On the other hand, it has been oriented towards the design and fabrication of specific instrumentation used for manufacturing processes control and final characterization of manufactured products. Another goal in this collaboration has been achieving more efficient systems for urban transportation, improving optical, acoustic and energetic performance of glass so that it contributes to obtaining more efficient and comfortable transportation elements.

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