Since 1941, Photo Research
has made significant contributions to the field of photometry and
spectroradiometry, the science of measuring the characteristics of
light. The company was founded as Photo Research Corporation by Karl
Freund, a well-known cinematographer, who, earlier in his career,
began developing products to improve the quality of photography in
the motion picture industry. His products, the Spectra® Colour
Temperature Meter and a direct reading brightness meter, received two
Academy Awards for technical achievement from the Motion Picture
Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Photo Research's market
grew as other industries learned of the usefulness of accurate light
measurement. When aircraft manufacturers required a special luminance
meter with close-up optics that could precisely measure the
brightness and colour of aircraft panel displays, Photo Research
developed the first Spectra SpotMeter®. This instrument, still an
industry standard, helps engineers design and develop light-emitting
products such as aircraft instruments and panels, automotive
instrument panels, tail lights and headlights, motion picture
screens, flat panel displays and cathode ray tubes (CRTs).
In 1960, Photo Research
developed the Spectra Pritchard® Photometer with the help of Dr.
Ben Pritchard, a well-known authority in the field of light
measurement. Also an industry standard, the Spectra Pritchard
Photometer is protected by three U.S. patents. The product's
sophistication lent itself to many new applications, including
astronomical and star-simulation measurements and human factors testing.
During the 1970s, Photo
Research received four additional Academy Awards from the MPAAS for
products as diverse as the film-lens balanced Three Colour Meter and
the Spectra Film Gate Photometer for motion picture printers.
The last decade has seen
Photo Research's famous optical designs miniaturised to affordable
products which offer the precision of laboratory table-top
instruments, together with the convenience of light-weight, micro-
processor controlled portability.
Since 1990, the product
line has expanded to include systems to measure the flying height of
disc-drive heads, analysis equipment to determine the performance of
CRT monitors at the sub-pixel level, video photometers to analyse
luminance and color uniformity of instrument panels, and on-line
equipment to perform digital adjustment and performance testing of CRTs.
Today, there are more
Photo Research precision photometers in use than those made by any
Photo Research, Inc. is
one of nine subsidiaries of Excel Technology, Inc.; all of which are
involved in electro-optics related markets.
Excel Technology is a
public company traded on the NASDAQ Stock Exchange under the symbol XLTC