Speeding innovation for industry
Sofradir, founded in 1986, is today the world’s second-leading vendor of cooled infrared detectors for aerospace, defense, and industrial applications. One thing that hasn’t changed is Sofradir’s commitment to innovation. The company allocates 12% of its revenue to R&D.
One of the secrets behind Sofradir’s success is its HgCdTe technology, which was originally developed at Leti. The company has continued to work with Leti to improve the technology through a joint lab, Defir. The technology, protected by some 55 patents, gives Sofradir’s detectors a broad spectrum of wavelengths and the capacity to operate at higher temperatures than competing technologies. Sofradir supplies detectors for military equipment (customers include the United States Army), satellites, scientific research instruments, and industrial process control equipment. The company handles the entire manufacturing process— from substrate to final testing—in house. Twothirds of Sofradir’s revenue is generated by export sales.
Sofradir is expanding its business to cover all technologies on semiconductor materials for infrared detection. The company is broadening its product lines in order to penetrate new markets. Sofradir will continue to conduct R&D through its joint lab with Leti.
Resources and skills
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.