ROADMap today announced that it has successfully closed a funding round of $1.7 million by securing investment from a number of institutional and private investors. The investment will help fund the expansion of the business as it takes its revolutionary wavelength selective switch (WSS) technology to market. The company, spun-out from the University of Cambridge, is developing the next generation of WSS which is universal, flexible, and software up-gradable. These switches are used to create Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexers (ROADMs) which are now a fast expanding part of optical telecom networks, enabling the flexible use of different wavelengths of light that carry traffic through the network.
As network demand burgeons, being driven by unrelenting consumer demand for streaming, internet and cloud applications, carriers are looking to increase the efficiency with which they use their optical resources, which has led to the creation of flexible, software-controlled networks. Such systems rely on ROADMs to allow traffic to be routed without the need to convert from optical to electrical signals. The ROADM market is forecast to reach $11 billion by 2020 and WSSs are the critical enabling technology within these. Liquid Crystal on Silicon (LCoS) technology, which was pioneered at Cambridge, has emerged as the only suitable candidate to meet the demands of current and future needs, and ROADMap Systems is developing these into the next-generation WSS, which are densely integrated to achieve high performance and low cost.
ROADMap CEO Karl Heeks commented ‘We are grateful to our seed investors, who have all re-invested in this Series A round, together with new investors for their support in the company. We are developing a highly innovative WSS solution that is protected by a suite of patents and which we believe will provide profound benefits, in both current markets for optical networks as well as opening up potential new and exciting markets in data-centers and optical computing.’
The company also recently took part in OFC 2016, the worlds largest optical communications and networking conference in Anaheim, California. ROADMap’s CEO Karl Heeks and VP Engineering Brian Robertson gave a talk on their new technology a universal, flexible and software up-gradable WSS. These novel optical switches control the flow of data through the network without the need for optical to electrical data conversion, and are the key building block of dynamic, high speed telecom systems.