Last week, Gov. Cuomo announced that New York has been selected by the Department of Defense to lead a multi-state Integrated Photonics Institute for Manufacturing Innovation. Photonics is an area of study that involves the use of radiant energy, such as light. Potential applications include improving computer chips, and data transfer and storage.

The state will receive a $110 million federal grant support a high-tech consortium with business operations, a company incubator and accelerator, workforce training, and board of directors headquartered in Rochester. Total public and private investment in the Photonic Institute will exceed $600 million, including more than $250 million by New York State to equip, install, and make operational a state-of-the-art photonics prototyping operation.

Rochester Business Alliance President and CEO Bob Duffy said:

“This investment recognizes our region’s core strengths and has the potential to bring with it an economic rebirth of Rochester. This competition win could not have happened without tremendous teamwork by all of the partners involved in developing the proposal. I give special thanks to Governor Cuomo for pledging an additional $250 million in state funding which helped put the plan over the top. Also deserving praise are University of Rochester President Joel Seligman, RIT President Bill Destler, and SUNY Poly President Alain Kaloyeros for providing us with tremendous academic strength to bolster our partnership. Thanks also to the Department of Defense and our legislative delegation including Senator Schumer and Congresswoman Slaughter for their untiring advocacy of the plan in Washington. The Rochester region is known around the world for its strength and legacy in the area of photonics. This victory and the investment it brings make us even stronger.”