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Sofradir, Onera To Seek New Thermal-Imaging Tech

Oct. 8, 2013 - 11:24AM   |  
By ANDREW CHUTER   |   Comments
Sofradir is teaming with France's Onera research organization to seek innovations in thermal imaging technology. (Sofradir)
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LONDON — Sofradir has tied up a five-year partnership deal with France’s state-owned Onera research organization to develop new thermal imaging technologies.

The deal, known as a partner research innovation (PRI) agreement, will see the two concerns develop thermal imaging technologies for next-generation infrared detectors.

A key part of the arrangement is aimed at accelerating the transfer of know-how from the state-owned aerospace and defense research organization into the marketplace through the link with Sofradir, a technology company based in Chatenay-Malabry, France.

The two sides have collaborated previously, but this is the first time they have signed a PRI agreement, a new type of French public-private contract that enables Onera to transfer technology and expertise to industry.

In a statement, the partners said their combined strengths in aerospace and defense research and industrial expertise will “facilitate the paradigm shift necessary for innovation uptake in thermal imaging.”

Potential innovations likely to be pursued include more compact multipurpose thermal imaging products with simplified or no external optics, as well as new thermal capabilities, such as high-resolution and hyperspectral imagery.

Philippe Bensussan, the chairmen and CEO of Sofradir, said the collaboration would “break down the technological barriers in infrared by exploring new possibilities in optical integration and other techniques. ... We have high expectation about what these advantages will bring to our customers who design optronics systems for defense, space and commercial applications.”

Sofradir is jointly owned by France’s Thales and Sagem groups. Last year, it reinforced its position as Europe’s leading infrared detector supplier when it announced the takeover of the infrared businesses of its two shareholders.

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