Our Company

Bringing Photonic R&D to actual product development

VLC Photonics S.L. is a photonic Design and Testing house based in Valencia, Spain, devoted to providing turn-key engineering services related to the development of photonic integrated circuits (PICs) towards multiple application fields.

Founded in July 2011 as a spin-off from the Polytechnical University of Valencia, VLC Photonics has evolved into a global leader in photonic integration solutions becoming a large company as part of the Hitachi High-Tech group by November 2020. With roots in optical communication systems and photonic integrated circuits, our journey has been marked by innovation, adaptability, and a commitment to excellence.

Read more about Hitachi High-Tech

Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a multinational conglomerate engaged in activities in a broad range of fields in medical, semiconductor, and various value chain solutions.

Hitachi High-Tech corporation offers extensive solutions to the multiple markets including Analytical & Medical Solutions (manufacturing and sales of clinical analyzers, biotechnology products, and analytical instruments), Nano-Technology Solutions (manufacturing and sales of semiconductor manufacturing equipment and analysis equipment), and Industrial Solutions (providing high value-added solutions in the fields of social & industrial infrastructures and mobility, etc.). For further information, visit the website

Contact: Hitachi High-Tech Corporation 

Innovative-Photonics Dept., Business Integration Div.,

Value Chain Solution Business Group

Hitachi High-Tech Corporation (Contact: Shunsuke Goto)

Phone: +81 3 3504 7111

Our Values

Teamwork

Continuous Improvements

Integrity and honesty

Mission

Our mission is to provide engineering solutions that allow our customers to harness the benefits of photonic integration, as well as to build up on our providers technologies.

Our mission spans from the initial work of drafting high-level optical system architectures to the final part of specifying its deepest technical details, all the while under a customized approach to the specific application domain at hand.

Vision

We aim at keep on being a leading pure-play photonic design and test house, skilled in the main material platforms under a fabless business model. We value expertise and customer orientation, to be able to fulfil the most defying challenges in photonic integration and provide trustworthy and professional solutions that can scale all the way from R&D to volume production.

VLC Photonics aims at remaining a fundamental global actor of the complex and evolving photonic integration ecosystem, contributing to the development of synergies among different international players, and to the expansion of photonic integration technologies and the growth of their markets.

FAQ

What do you sell?

We are a fabless company offering different services and solutions to exploit the advantages of photonic integrated circuits. From a high-level system perspective, we can assess the feasibility of integrating any optical system into a photonic chip, and provide cost estimates, expected performances and foreseeable limitations. We then cover the whole integration process, from the photonic modelling, simulation, design and layout, to the prototypingpackaging, die and wafer level testing or certification if needed. Additionally, we can provide stand-alone outsourced design services, foundry process design kit (PDK) development, and fab reports.

What optical applications can benefit from integration?
Most optical systems can be integrated one way or another. From telecommunications (transceivers for FTTx and access networks, microwave and RF photonics, long haul and transport networks, optical datacom) to optical signal processing (LIDAR, optical metrology, optical instrumentation, optical communications, quantum optics), sensing (structural engineering, chemical sensors, transport and aerospace, energy and utilities) or biophotonics (medical instrumentation, photonic lab-on-a-chip, analytics and diagnostics, optical biosensors). You can learn more about this in the applications section of the web.
Why should I replace an electrical or optical part of my system by a photonic integrated circuit?
This will always depend on your system and application, but there is a good chance that integrated photonic technologies, as opposed to free-space or fibre-based optics, can make your application faster and more scalable, most of the times simpler, with lower power consumption, and most importantly, in a more cost-effective way in the long run. Learn more at our Technology page.
But integration is usually an expensive technology!
While this used to be true, current mass-manufacturing of integrated photonic circuits is lowering the cost of optical systems, and fabless manufacturing models like the one provided by VLC Photonics are allowing small and medium sized entreprises to benefit from this technology at reasonable costs. Additionally, integration by itself reduces costs in the bill of materials, in the packaging, in the assembly and test, and in the OPEX of the system too. There are plenty of opportunities for low-cost manufacturing through shared multi-project wafer runs(also known as shuttle runs), and volumes don’t need to be high, just a few tens of chips are OK to start with. Learn more at our Technology page.
What does it mean that you are a fabless company?
Being fabless means that we outsource the chip fabrication to external partners, and we focus only on the design and the later characterization and testing phases. By being fabless, we are not restricted to design your chips in a single material platform or attached to a certain fabrication process, allowing always to select the most suited manufacturing partner for your application. We have gathered our knowledge (only public information) about these manufacturers in our foundry reports.
What materials do you work with?
We are skilled in the design of chips in III-V compounds (mostly Indium Phosphide, InP and Gallium Arsenide, GaAs) and in Silicon Photonics (Silica SiO2/PLC, Silicon-on-Insulator SOI, and Silicon Nitride Si3N4). Alternatively, our expertise also covers polymers, Lithium Niobate (LiNbO3) and others. Learn from all the photonic chip manufacturers for each material platform at our Foundry reports.
Can I order a large series of chips? Or just one prototype chip?
Yes, you can, and we will be happy to serve you. We work with multiple photonic foundries, each of them adequate for a certain volume, from a few units to hundreds or thousands of chips. Nevertheless, to guarantee your investment we advise to first develop some prototypes, to proof-test and optimize the chip functionality as well as its interaction with the rest of your system. Contact us for more details at our Request form.
What is the difference between VLC Photonics and an optical chip manufacturer?
Chip manufacturers make huge investments in very expensive fabrication equipment and facilities, and they serve huge markets with millions of units of certain components, like telecom transceivers or splitters. We also address smaller niche markets where customers may have very specific needs for different domains. Our years-long expertise in optical systems, and design skills in multiple material platforms, allow us to realize the optimal photonic circuit for the application at hand. Learn more on the fabless business model at our Technology page.
Do you take care of the packaging of the optical chip and the later opto-electronic integration into my product?
Yes, we can do it if needed. We do have basic assembly capabilities in-house and through our specialized back-end partners, we can provide multiple solutions according to the end-product needs, including our professional assistance on the best packaging and assembly options, control software, certification or later integration of the photonic chip into the final system. Learn more at our Packaging page.
And what about intellectual property (IP) rights?
All the IP rights of a system you want us to design can remain your own if you require so. We always work under strict non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) and confidentiality is a very important aspect for us. We act as a pure-play design house, meaning we do not sell any products or self-developments, we are fully at your disposal.
What are the general Terms and Conditions of VLC Photonics?
Our complete T&C can be downloaded from this website at: Legal Disclaimer and T&C
How can I be sure about VLC Photonics services quality?
The in-house services provided by VLC Photonics (Consultancy, Design, Characterization and Assembly) are strictly controlled through our internal processes. Recently awarded with the ISO 9001 certification, we are keen to improve everyday the quality of the work we deliver to our customers.

Fabless fabrication and packaging services provided by VLC Photonics are based on the quality and guarantees delivered by our partners. We make sure, through our provider management and evaluation processes, that the quality here is ensured as much as possible, although many times during prototyping, we need to clarify to our customers that these external services can only be subcontracted under a «best effort» approach.

Our Partners

Our Team

Iñigo Artundo
Iñigo Artundo CEO
Received the M.Sc. in Telecom Engineering at the Universidad Pública de Navarra (Pamplona, Spain) in 2005, and received his Ph.D. on Applied Physics and Photonics at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Brussels, Belgium) in 2009. He holds specializations in Business Financing, Commercial Management and Research, and Strategic Marketing. He has been involved in several national and European research projects and networks of excellence focused on reconfigurable optical interconnects, development of micro-optic devices and photonic integrated circuits, and on flexible access and in-building fiber network architectures. Since 2011 he has been involved in VLC Photonics, and he is currently the CEO. He has worked as a reviewer for several scientific journals and national funding agencies, including being a member of the high-level steering committee set up by the European Commission for the establishment of the Quantum Technologies Flagship program.
José David Domenech
José David Domenech Co-Founder. CTO

Received the B.Sc. degree in Telecommunications and the M.Sc. degree in Technologies, Systems and Networks of Communication from the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia (UPV, Valencia, Spain) in 2006 and 2008 respectively. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in optics at the Telecommunications and Multimedia Applications Institute (iTEAM) from UPV, inside the Optical and Quantum Communications Group, focusing his research in the use of integrated ring resonators for microwave photonics applications.
Since 2006, he has been working on the design of integrated optic circuits in Indium-Phosphide/Silicon Nitride/SOI technologies within several European and national research projects. On 2011 he co-founded VLC Photonics and since then works as the CTO. In 2012 he was awarded with the Intel PhD Honor Programme award.

Shunsuke Goto
Shunsuke Goto Sales & Marketing Manager
Shunsuke Goto joined Hitachi High-Tech Corporation in 2015. He has engaged to grow the optical component business of Japanese providers to the oversee customers, mainly in the fibre optics field for 7 years. In parallel, he was involved the project to expand the portfolio of the company by the acquisition of VLC Photonics and established the growth plan in photonics field with VLC management since 2020. He has moved to Valencia in 2022 . Managing sales & marketing team, active business development and creating collaboration with Hitachi group.
Antonio Bueno
Antonio Bueno Characterization Manager
Telecommunication Engineer with a PhD in Telecommunication obtained at Universidad Politécnica de Valencia. More than 10 years working in optics and photonics. His fields of expertise are: Fiber Bragg grating inscription, structural health monitoring using optical fiber sensors, characterization of optical devices, programming and synchronization of optical and electrical devices, task automation and prototyping. Multidisciplinary work on national and international projects in Spain, at Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, and in Belgium, at Université de Mons and B-SENS company, concerning optical communication and sensors. Working and studying in multicultural work environments allowed him to develop a collaborative and open-minded profile. He is currently the characterization department manager.
Paulius Naujalis
Paulius Naujalis Operations Manager
M.Sc degree in Physics of Vilnius University in Lithuania with extensive experience in optics industry including manufacturing sites in Lithuania, Spain and UK where he launched couple of the products into market and lead the design of numerous amounts of prototypes for Industrial, Academic, Space and Military applications.
Tigers Jonuzi
Tigers Jonuzi Design Manager
Obtained the M.Sc in Engineering Physics at the university of Politencnico di Milano (Polimi) with a thesis, carried on in the Photonic Devices Group, on the design and control of photonic integrated circuits for light beam manipulation part of H2020 Super-Pixels FET project. He is co-authored of conference papers spanning analog photonic computing and optical beam manipulation with a great diversity of actuators as optical MEMS, graphene modulators and Phase-Change materials. He is currently attending an industrial Ph.D., hosted by VLC Pphotonics S.L., working in the POST-DIGITAL project where his research focuses on the photonic device integration of neuromorphic computing, spanning from reservoir to convolutional neural network schemes, defining an efficient approach for harnessing and suppressing nonlinear optical processes.
Eduardo Selma
Eduardo Selma Administration & HR Manager
Eduardo Selma received a degree in Economics from the University of Valencia in 2010 with a stage in University of Bristol and obtained two master’s degrees. One in Business Management from the Chamber of Commerce of Valencia and Université Paris 1 Pantheon- Sorbonne in 2011. The second master was on International Trade from the International University Menéndez Pelayo in 2014. Furthermore, he has international work experience in the United Kingdom as Business Analyst and Ghana as trade advisor in the Spanish Embassy.
Pascual Muñoz
Pascual Muñoz Co-Founder. Member of the Board

Obtained the M.Sc. degree in Telecommunication Engineering from Universitat Politécnica de Valencia (UPV) in 1998. After one year in the industry as IT Engineer, he returned to UPVLC to obtain his Ph.D degree in 2003, where he developed reference models for the design and modeling of integrated optics Arrayed Waveguide Grating (AWG) devices.

The models were validated in collaboration with the company Alcatel Optronics (Livingston, UK). After his Ph.D. he moved to Technische Universiteit Eindhoven (TUe), where he was engaged on the design of AWG-based ASPICs for ultra-short pulses processing.

Back into UPVLC, Pascual was appointed as coordinator for the «Joint Research Activity on InP AWG based devices» (2007-2009) in the ePIXnet network of excellence, where several research institutes and companies collaborated to develop multi-wavelength lasers for optical burst/packet switched networks.

From 2008, Pascual is an Associate Professor at UPVLC. He was the lead entrepreneur and co-founder of VLC Photonics in 2011. He served as CEO from 2011 to 2013.

José Capmany
José Capmany Co-Founder.

Obtained the Ingeniero de Telecomunicacion degree from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) in 1987 and the Licenciado en Ciencias Físicas. He holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering from UPM (1991) and a PhD in Quantum Physics from the Universidad de Vigo. Since 1991 he is with the Departamento de Comunicaciones, Universidad Politecnica de Valencia (UPV), where he started the activities on optical communications and photonics, founding the Photonics Research Labs Group. Since 1996 he is a Full Professor. From 2005-16, he was the Director of the Research Institute of Telecommunications and Multimedia (iTEAM) at UPV. He has published over 550 papers in international refereed journals and conferences. He is the author of 15 patents. He has been a member of the Technical Program Committees of over 50 international conferences in the field of photonics including ECOC, OFC, IOOC, CLEO Europe, and OECC. Prof. Capmany is a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the OSA. He was a member of the IEEE Photonics Society Board of Governors (2008-10), distinguished lecturer (2013-14), associate Editor of Photonics Technology Letters (2010-16) and the Journal of Lightwave Technology (2016-18), and current Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics. He is also a founder and chief innovation officer of the spin-off companies VLC Photonics, EPHOOX and iPronics.

Awards & Recognitions

pic

2019 PIC Award for the “BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN PIC DEVELOPMENT”

IDEASUPV-Logo

IDEAS Upv recognition for VLCs outstanding business track in 2019.

ISO-9001-2015-small

ISO 9001:2015 quality certification made by Bureau Veritas organization.