Photonics (fibre optics and electronics) is a critical enabling technology for communication systems worldwide. It underpins the fabric that enables us to send and receive information almost instantly within the digital era we now live in. However, with the continual development of photonic technologies and new terminology, an increasing array of component options, tough choices must be made regarding quality, cost, and reliability. Nevertheless, Photonics has increased the speed and reliability of our modern-day connections, so much so that it is transforming our lives and businesses.

A glimpse into Photonic technology

Photonics is a global industry that started back in the 1960s when Sir Charles Kao shared his discovery on properties of glass (optical fibre) that has since enabled us to transform the way we communicate with each other. This discovery lead to the ability to send large volumes of data across long distances with minimal signal degradation.

The photonics industry is expected to be valued at over £3 billion in the next few years. The technology and applications are expanding, and in addition to faster and cheaper ways for us to transfer ‘bits and bytes’, we have seen the growth in other applications such as healthcare (OCT, fMRI, fNIR, PET, and other optical tomography), sensing, non-destructive testing, industrial (cutting, ablation, polishing, etching), and vision systems where light is used to transmit and detect information instead of traditional radio frequency waves.

The industry comes from a highly technical background, and with it comes the abbreviated technical terminology and language. If that is not hard enough to grasp, the different form factors and whether they are compatible with a Cisco or Juniper switch are enough to put many off. The complexity continues with different terminology for similar components: wireless (Wi-Fi/Wi-Fi 6/3G/4G/5G), optical fibre, or copper (DOCSIS/ADSL/hybrid coax/HFC/Cat 5/6/RJ45). The complexity of the products, standards, and specifications is increasing, making it difficult to be confident whether it is the correct component and compatible, let alone the realiability and if it will arrive on time for a project.

Meeting industry demands

Westbury Photonics was established when it identified a need to support IT Managers, Network Engineers, and Field Applications Engineers. They have to support and understand various systems and components, some of which will have similar terminology but are subtly different. A mistake such as misunderstanding the difference between MMF and SMF, PC or APC, SR vs ZR could damage or prevent a link from working at all.

With our experience and knowledge of the industry, the emerging technologies and components amassed across 30 years in designing, developing, and supporting optical and wireless components, sub-systems, and networks, we are suitably placed to offer components that have been selected with quality, availability and technical support. It is rare for a company to offer components and the specialist knowledge and technical support to go with it.

We also attend and support industry standards, trade bodies, government lobby groups and will be present at all key industry events and trade shows worldwide. This knowledge and experience enable us to support our customers with the best solution for their needs.

We support businesses in three key areas:

  • Pricing – Fair and transparent for efficient decision making
  • Availability – What items are in stock and pre-order options
  • Technical support – Access to an experienced and qualified team.

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