Date Announced: 15 May 2012 Birmingham Science Park has expanded its photonics research and development team, by appointing Paul Williams to the new post of Business Development Manager. Mr Williams will be based at the Park’s Optical Performance Centre; a state-of-the-art accredited test and measurement laboratory, which specialises in the optical performance of new lighting and photonics technology. A £770,000 European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) project is run from the Centre. This enables SMEs with prototype and early-stage designs for new low-carbon lighting solutions to take advantage of vital support into research and development. Paul Williams has worked in the lighting industry for 23 years and offers invaluable industry contacts and market knowledge. He commenced his career as a lab technician and has spent five years working with Local Authority and Government bodies promoting energy saving road and street lighting. Latterly he has worked with two start-ups to promote low cost/energy saving LED downlighters. Dr David Hardman MBE, CEO of Birmingham Science Park said: “Paul has an impressive track record in to promoting advances in solid state lighting and developing long term relationships with many leading players and companies in the lighting industry. The Park’s Optical Performance Centre undertakes commissions from companies based within the region, as well as from national and international clients, highlighting the regard in which our facilities and team are held by the sector. We required a Business Development Manager to take the Centre forwards by creating and developing new revenue streams. With Paul in this role, the opportunities for growth are excellent.” Paul Williams will also assist with the promotion of the Science Park’s annual euroLED Conference, Gala Dinner and Exhibition, which is now in its ninth year and is being held at the NEC on 13th and 14th June 2012. It will again attract well over 2,000 attendees. Mr Williams will also coordinate and promote technical training programmes and seminars for the lighting industry. Delivered at Birmingham Science Park, the courses are run in line with ERDF funding parameters and objectives. Paul will also market specialist software to assist companies with the understanding of optical hazards of light sources, such as lasers, LEDs, flashlamps and other lighting products. Paul Williams, Business Development Manager at Birmingham Science Park’s Optical Performance Centre said: “This is a brilliant opportunity to promote an outstanding facility for an industry that I have loved working in for 23 years and counting. The Optical Performance Centre is seeing some highly exciting innovations, both from local companies and further afield. The whole industry is undergoing significant growth at present, especially amongst SMEs. It is this end of the market that we can assist the most, through the £770,000 ERDF project for research and development into prototype and early-stage designs for new low-carbon lighting solutions.” Using cutting-edge, state of the art equipment, the Science Park’s Optical Performance Centre can perform a multitude of different tests, from measuring light and colour to defining complex optical structures. The team can also undertake specialist tests, such as thermography, reflectometry, environmental stress testing and high speed imaging. In January 2012, Birmingham Science Park entered into an agreement with Bridgend-based LUX-TSI. As a consequence, the Optical Performance Centre became one of two state-of-the-art accredited testing laboratories to be run and managed by LUX-TSI, while the Science Park took an equity stake in the whole LUX-TSI business. LUX-TSI is one of a small number of the UK Accreditation Service’s (UKAS) approved lighting product testing companies (to ISO17025 standard). LUX-TSI also has ‘Preferred Partner’ status with USA-based UL (Underwriters Laboratories), which is the world’s largest safety testing company. By combining the centres in Birmingham and Bridgend, the aim is to become the leading testing centre for lighting innovations in Europe.