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Geared for Growth: TOPTICA Shines a Light on Greater Rochester’s Laser-Focused Future

June 8, 2023

On Wednesday, June 7, Mark Tolbert, President of TOPTICA, was featured on “Geared for Growth” as part of Greater Rochester Chamber’s partnership with 13WHAM. Tolbert shared an overview of what photonics is, what role TOPTICA’s products play in products all around us, and why the Greater Rochester region is the perfect place for their company to grow.

Unlike optics which focuses on the manipulation of light, photonics “is the creation of light,” shared Tolbert. TOPTICA develops and manufactures high-end laser systems for scientific and industrial applications. “We don’t make lasers that cut things or blow them up, we make lasers that focus on precision,” Tolbert explained. “We’re looking for very stable light, and that’s used in applications that are even more confusing: quantum computing, biophotonics, semiconductor testing inspection,” he continued.

Tolbert shared use cases for the lasers like the ones his company develops and remarked that “There’s so little that you could actually do in life today without a laser.” Examples of products that use lasers that people may not expect include Apple’s new Vision Pro. “Lasers are used to create something that hasn’t been made yet,” he said, “Our lasers help to drive and enable what might come next.”

TOPTICA first came to Rochester 17 years ago in 2006 and was previously based outside of Boston. Tolbert shared that the colleges and universities in Greater Rochester including Rochester Institute of Technology and the University of Rochester played a huge role in deciding to come to the region. These higher education institutions play a critical role in the development of the new technologies that TOPICA uses and what their products are used in. The region also is uniquely suited with the top talent that is needed by TOPTICA to continue to grow and succeed.

Tune in on Wednesday, June 14th at 8:45 AM for next week’s “Geared for Growth” interview on Fox Rochester.


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