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DLi Photonics West 2020 Highlights

The DLi team attended SPIE Photonics West, from February 4 – 6 in San Francisco, California. Photonics West is the world’s largest photonics technologies event, consisting of three conferences and two exhibitions. This year, our partners at Shanghai Optics welcomed us into their booth where DLi showcased the 3DLP9000 Light Engine. We want to thank Shanghai Optics for sharing their booth and we enjoyed seeing all of our valued partners at the event including Texas Instruments, Vialux, Holo, CST, and Energetiq.

We were also proud to witness the 2020 SPIE Prism Awards this year. Since 2008, SPIE, along with media partner Photonics Media, have been hosting the SPIE Prism Awards. The 12th annual Prism Awards is the international competition that honors the best new optics and photonics products on the market, and we’re so proud that our partners at TERA-print were recognized at Photonics West 2020! Their TERA-Fab E Series instrument, the first commercial beam pen lithography (BPL) tool, was recognized in the Life Sciences award category, and was one of only 9 awardees out of more than 100 submissions this year. The TERA-Fab E Series fits on a desktop, and enables a powerful new way to rapidly prototype and fabricate nanostructured patterns and devices in industries such as electronics, biology, medicine, and chemical synthesis. It uses arrays with as many as 100,000 independently addressable pens, each with a tiny aperture to pattern surfaces with light – and it was enabled by DLP technology!

Beam pen lithography (BPL) is a cantilever-free scanning probe lithography technique based on polymer pen lithography (PPL). In BPL, the transparent, two-dimensional elastomeric tip array employed in PPL is coated with a thin layer of metallic gold and then small apertures are physically or chemically generated at the apex of the tips. Light can then be passed through these holes to effect photochemistry (e.g., develop photoresist) and ultimately create nanoscale features with dimensions below the diffraction limit of the light source. When coupled to a digital micromirror device (DMD), each tip can be independently addressed, and arbitrary patterns can be generated.

DLi customized a projection system to the TERA-print team’s specifications, optimizing the system to achieve the groundbreaking results they were after, eventually settling on an entirely custom-built CELscope, based on our CEL5500 light engine. As we continue to help our partners push the boundaries of light exploration through custom DLP solutions, it’s a real thrill to see their groundbreaking work acknowledged by the photonics industry!

Check out our photos from the Photonics West conference as well as the Prism Awards. You can also find more photos of the event on the SPIE website.

For more DLP conference information visit Emerging Digital Micromirror Device Based Systems and Applications XI. To schedule a meeting with DLi, please contact the DLi team at

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