Latest News

Laser Rejection Eyewear for Civil and Military Aviation and Law enforcement

Posted in News on Tuesday 23rd May 2017 at 11:03am


Increasing incidents of laser strikes directed at aircraft and personnel have highlighted the threat to civil, military and emergency services aviation safety as well as to law enforcement officers on the ground.Not only do these strikes dazzle, they also cause vision impairment and potential severe damage to eyesight.


Orion Photonics has developed laser rejection eyewear to eliminate this risk by simultaneously blocking the main laser pointer wavelengths to a safe level while providing high transmission through the lenses with a neutral colour. The coated eyewear does not degrade the visibility of cockpit displays.


New - HUD Alignment and Assembly into Side Supports

Posted in News on Tuesday 23rd May 2017 at 8:50am




Orion Photonics announces assembly capability of HUD combiners into side supports




Orion Photonics announces that it now has the capability for alignment and assembly of dual graded Head-up Display combiners into side supports. This move is a major advancement in the company’s strategy for moving up the supply chain in supplying assemblies rather than just optical components. The company already has a contract for supplying assemblies for a major military avionic HUD programme, and this capability is being offered to other avionic HUD platforms.

Orion Photonics is a world leading supplier of head up display combiners, supplying production quantities of single and dual graded combiners to different European defence contractors. Most recently, the company established a market lead in the development of the world’s first multiple colour graded HUD combiners. Called “ClearHUD”, the latest innovation in rugate HUD combiners for avionics offers a two-colour display and a neutral transmitted view. A major feature of the new combiner coatings is that there are fully graded reflection notches, one of which is in the red part of the spectrum, thereby providing the possibility of introducing a red warning or “attention getter” superimposed on the green display. This warning signal would be visible to the naked eye from the HUD but also visible to the pilot when wearing Night Vision Goggles (NVG’s)

Commenting on the new assembly capability, John Allen, Technical Director of Orion Photonics stated “the company had long intended to move up the supply chain as this was seen as a strategic growth in the company capabilities. As a major manufacturer of HUD combiners, this was a natural progression in the ongoing growth of Orion photonics, and consolidates our position as an international supplier of Head up Displays”.






Introducing ClearHUD

Posted in News on Friday 19th May 2017 at 2:18pm


Introducing ClearHUD


The Next Generation Colour Selective Head-Up Display


Orion Photonics are pleased to bring to the aircraft market a pioneering two-colour display graded combiner assembly with high transmission and low colouration.


ClearHUD has a secondary Red reflection notch in addition to the highly efficient Green reflection notch, thereby allowing the introduction of red warning symbology superimposed on the green display.


As well as the obvious benefits of enhancing pilot situational awareness, the secondary colour helps to alleviate the perception of display clutter. Add to these benefits the neutral colouration, eliminating the pink outside view normally associated with conventional combiners and you have a superior HUD for new aircraft and upgrades alike.




·         Increased Visible Photopic Transmission > 78%


·         High Level of Image reflectance in Green (48%) and Red (60%) in all flight conditions.


·         Minimal Colouration of transmitted view of the outside world


·         Crystal clear in appearance.


ClearHUD is manufactured to the same level of precision and durability as all our Graded Dual Notch Combiners in service with aircraft today.




Orion Awarded International Avionic HUD Contracts

Posted in News on Monday 16th March 2015 at 3:32pm


A Head-up Display (HUD) in an aircraft cockpit allows the pilot to see flight information projected onto his view through the cockpit canopy as an image floating in space. This illusion is achieved with special coatings on glass screens (combiners) placed in front of the pilot. Orion Photonics has developed unique design and manufacturing techniques for HUD combiners and recent advances in technology have resulted in coatings that are virtually invisible to the pilot, but provide a high image brightness of the display information. The principle relies on the provision of colour selective “notch” coatings based on rugate principles where the reflected colour is tuned to the display emission colour, resulting in a high brightness view of the display while maintaining high visibility of the direct view through the cockpit.

Where cockpit space is limited, a dual combiner assembly is used to increase the field of view and this requires special design and manufacturing techniques to transfer the display image smoothly between the two combiners, a principle that Orion Photonics has a unique solution. In addition, the technique can be adapted for multiple colour displays where reflection notches are matched to each emission colour.

2014 and 2015 have been important years for Orion Photonics in that the company has consolidated an international reputation for the design and manufacture of Head-up Display combiner coatings based on rugate principles, and this has resulted in the company being awarded contracts from 3 international avionic companies for the supply of combiners for different aircraft programmes. HUD displays have become a focus of our company strategy and this now represents a major part of our business.

Second 1200 coating system acquired

Posted in News on Tuesday 26th August 2014 at 1:56pm

Orion Photonics has recently taken delivery of a Satisloh 1200 box coater to add to its exisiting 1200 plasma assisted coating system. The new plant, equpped with electron beam deposition, ion source and automatic process control, is being commisioned and process deposition trials are already in progress. It will be further upgraded with a plasma source to provide the same capacity and capability as the original system. Commmenting on the acquisition, Technical Director John Allen stated that the expansion was as a result of the need for increased capacity to service the ongoing and future requirements for Head up Display combiners, optical components and other avionic systems.

March 2013: HUD combiners supplied to major defence company

Posted in News on Wednesday 3rd April 2013 at 1:35pm

The company has secured repeat contracts for the supply of dual graded rugate combiners to a major European defence company. The combiners, which are used on a fighter trainer programme are manufactured by a process which is unique to Orion Photonics, and enables high display reflection of each combiner to be tailored in a way to allow seamless image transition between upper and lower combiners. Our success in the market area has attracted attention from other international defence companies.

March 2013: Orion wins ISO9001:2008 accreditation

Posted in News on Wednesday 3rd April 2013 at 1:23pm

We are delighted to announce that Orion Photonics has recently achieved ISO9001:2008 accreditation from BSI. This prestigious award consolidates the implementation of the company's  Quality Management System and gives confidence to our growing customer base in our ability to supply high quality optical thin film coatings. The award also recognises the effort that has been put in by all personnel within the company and with the support of our sister company, Wordentec Ltd.

February 2013: Photonics West

Posted in News on Friday 11th January 2013 at 5:07pm

The annual Photonics West conference and exhibition is taking place at the Moscone Center in San Francisco and we will be visiting from Tuesday 5th to Thursday 7th February. We have already set up some meetings with clients and we would be delighted to see any colleagues and friends while we are there. Please e-mail or phone if you would like to meet up.

Ocober 2012: Orion Photonics at Photonex

Posted in News on Monday 8th October 2012 at 2:25pm

The Annual Photonex exhibition is taking place at the Ricoh Arena Coventry on 17th and 18th of October and Orion Photonics will be exhibiting on stand E21. On our stand we will be showing examples of precision coated components and filters, including laser protection filters for medical and defence applications, and colour selective coated combiners for aircraft head up Displays. We will delighted to see you there to discuss any current or future requirements that you may have.

June 2012: Second coating system commissioned

Posted in News on Wednesday 6th June 2012 at 3:09pm

Orion Photonics are pleased to announce that a second coating system has been brought on-line for the production of precision thin film coatings and for process demonstration. The system is an 800QLC box coater upgraded by Wordentec Ltd and includes the latest high capacity electron beam sources and turbo-pumped system linked to the WAVE process controller. 

The coating system which is fully automated has proven its capability for precision optical coatings and metal-dielectric coatings for a number of applications. 

Orion Photonics at Photonex 2011

October 2011: Orion Photonics at Photonex

Posted in Events on Saturday 22nd October 2011 at 9:42am

On October 18th and 19th, 2011 Orion Photonics exhibited at ‘Photonex Vacuum EXPO’ which was based at the Ricoh Center in Coventry, UK.

Photonex is the premier exhibition for the UK and European Photonics Market. We established a presence there, renewing many previous contacts and were really delighted by the response from other exhibitors and visitors alike. We met new clients and were excited by the level of interest in the company.

Of particular importance was the concept of strategic alliance. Discussions are underway with a number of international companies who see Orion Photonics as a potential collaborator on selective projects.