December 2021 | PhotonFirst founder Pim Kat receives royal decoration

Blog Pim Kat Farewell

Dutch pioneer honored for integrated photonics sensing achievements upon retirement


Alkmaar, The Netherlands, December 16, 2021

On his retirement, Pim Kat, founder of PhotonFirst and pioneer in integrated photonics sensing was presented the insignia belonging to the Royal Honour of Officer Orange-Nassau by Deputy Mayor Jasper Nieuwenhuizen of Langedijk on behalf His Majesty Willem Alexander The King of the Netherlands. Over the last 15 years, Pim Kat has spent an enormous amount of time, money, energy, brain- and willpower to design, develop, build, test and apply integrated photonics in a wide range of applications and demonstrators. With this, he has not only created innovation leading company PhotonFirst (previously Technobis IPS) but also laid the groundwork for the photonics sensing market at large.

Pim has contributed to the role the Netherlands is playing in the field of photonics, and more specifically in Indium Phosphide, photonics device design, packaging, and integrated photonics. Netherlands is quickly positioning itself as a 'go-to' country for advanced photonics competency - and this has resulted in part from the drive and success of Pim’s work in the field’, said Michael Lebby, former CEO of OIDA (Optoelectronics Industry Development Association) and current CEO of Lightwave Logic Inc.

‘Not only did Pim Kat make the first product, he also discovered the gap in the value chain. He realized that in order to bring photonics based integrated circuits to market, these had to be packaged and tested for dedicated fields of use. Combining research, application development and dedicated packaging under one roof allowed him to unlock the market’, added Carlos Lee, Director General of EPIC (European Photonics Industry Consortium).