Space applications includes low-noise RF generation, communication, and synchronization applications.


Menhir Photonics offers innovative ultrafast laser solutions. From the very early stage, the focus was placed on customers’ needs. The core expertise is the design and assembly of ultra low-noise ultrafast femtosecond laser that are robust and very reliable. Menhir Photonics supplies their solution worldwide and has become, in a very short time, the international reference in the field of GHz pulsed lasers.

Interview with Florian Emaury, CEO of Menhir Photonics.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Florian Emaury: The main area of activities are Radars/LIDAR, Microwave Photonics, Research and Space-related activities.

E.E: What’s the news for 2021 about new products?

F.E: Menhir Photonics efforts to answer customer special needs led in 2020 and 2021 to the development of many new repetition rate lasers from 200 MHz to 2.5 GHz at 1.5 μm as central wavelength. We are currently working with partners to integrate our lasers in larger systems for real world applications. During this year, we plan to make a step toward the development of low-noise radiofrequency (RF) generator that will be suitable for mobile applications.

The hammer-test — The MENHIR-1550 is a robust oscillator.

E.E: What are the ranges of products?

F.E: Ranges of products are divided in two categories: MHz-level repetition rate and GHz-level repetition rate. They address two market segments due to their respective repetition rate. With high repetition rates, we answer customers’ needs with applications in planet hunting, astronomical spectroscopy as well as with radar and the generation of very clean RF signals. With lower repetition rates, we are successful in applications related to distribution of time and synchronization of remote setups to a standardized reference.

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

F.E: Our force is to propose highly-robust and long-lasting photonics solutions to a market which is currently booming, while requiring more mature products. Quantum-related market is making big steps forward more secure communications, accessible quantum computing and higher precision with sensing. We propose at the right time, the best solution to accompany this market growth in photonics applications. Our laser can be used for quantum pair generation as well as synchronization of various sub-systems.

The other market segment we are strongly active relates to radar and precision instrumentation. Precision instrumentation market is governed by large companies which design instruments that simplify the work of engineers and researchers. Evolution is mainly driven by customers looking for more reliable and higher‑performance products. For example, our markets require the production of higher bandwidth communication channels and for that one must be able to create and measure small signals over the carrier wave. With the MENHIR-1550, we accompany this demand by producing the next generation of low-noise reference clocks.

Easy-to-use: Menhir Photonics products are user-friendly.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

F.E: The market trend follows a well-defined cycle starting from product demonstration to large-scale automatic product manufacturing and miniaturization. Photonics market is represented by a lot of small and medium size companies providing tailored solutions. The market trend for ultrafast pulsed laser is directed toward turnkey solutions even by people with no background in photonics. We also observe a trend for smaller footprint products that can be integrated in larger system without requiring an entire room for them.

Menhir Photonics solutions are central to accompany this market trend. The MENHIR-1550 platform is progressive and a miniaturized version of the MENHIR-1550 is of high potential for coupling with photonics integrated circuits and other transportable (electronic) devices. The market trend for such products is directed to partnership between companies that can integrate our solutions.

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

F.E: The most innovative serial product that Menhir Photonics has is the MENHIR-1550-SERIES with a repetition rate of 1 GHz. It is at the core of our solution for low phase-noise radiofrequency (RF) and microwave signal generation. Because it is based on an optical technology, RF sources based on the MENHIR-1550 display the lowest phase noise specially on the short timescale, where current technologies like best-class quartz resonators cannot compete.

The most innovative tailored product that Menhir Photonics delivered is the MENHIR-1550 laser with 1 GHz repetition rate for frequency comb applications. Its performance was demonstrated by leading and independent experts in this field. Frequency combs from 1 GHz repetition rate lasers allow to measure light with unprecedented precision.

E.E: What estimations do you have for 2021?

F.E: With the pandemic, the way people interact has changed and a lot got online. At Menhir Photonics, we mostly work with international customers and were already used to web-based meeting. We estimate that this trend will follow for some years and we do not expect that this situation will strongly affect our business. Our customers will always have specials needs and Menhir Photonics take all the dispositions to meet them.


Industriestrasse 42, 8152 Glattbrugg, Zurich, Switzerland

Tel: +41 61 331 45 45



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