Allegro Acquires Voxtel to Drive LiDAR Solutions for Advanced Automotive Safety Systems

August 31, 2020

Acquisition pairs leading eye-safe photonics with Allegro’s extensive portfolio optimized for high growth ADAS applications in semi-autonomous and autonomous vehicles

Manchester, NH – Allegro MicroSystems (Allegro), a global leader in sensing and power semiconductor technology, today announced the acquisition of Voxtel, Inc, a privately held company specializing in advanced photonic and 3D imaging technology including long-range, eye-safe Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR). This acquisition brings together Voxtel’s significant laser and imaging expertise with Allegro’s automotive leadership and scale to enable the next generation of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS).

Voxtel, Inc. has been pioneering photonics since 1999, developing cutting-edge solutions for military, space, automotive and surveillance applications. Its ultra-miniature lasers, read-out integrated circuits (ROICs), and near-infrared (NIR) and short-wavelength infrared (SWIR) photodetectors, supported by more than 38 US patents, represent one of the broadest LADAR/LiDAR photonic technology suites available in the market today. Allegro’s innovative portfolio of motor drivers, position sensors, regulators, and current sensors, when combined with photonics, provides most of the key semiconductor components in the transmit and receive blocks of automotive LiDAR systems. This increases Allegro’s foothold in the car of the future.

“Allegro is a market leader in magnetic sensors for the automotive market. Annually, we ship more than 1 billion devices into automotive systems – 100 million of which are shipped into advanced automotive safety systems, including semi-autonomous vehicle systems,” said Ravi Vig, CEO of Allegro. “Our experience, scale and design for quality uniquely position us to enhance the Voxtel LiDAR portfolio for ADAS applications, aiming to make LiDAR systems safer, cost-effective, and widely adopted features in the cars of the future.”

LiDAR Enables Safer, Smarter Vehicles

LiDAR typically uses lasers, photodetectors, and read-out integrated circuits (ROICs) with time-of-flight (TOF) capability to measure distance by illuminating a target and analyzing the reflected light. LiDAR technology provides the high-resolution, three-dimensional information about the surrounding environment necessary to make fully autonomous driving a reality. It also supports adaptive cruise control, complements car cameras and radar and adds situational awareness.

Comprehensive Solutions, Including Essential “Eye-Safe” Capability

Historically, a barrier to broad adoption of LiDAR technology in vehicles has been the restriction of maximum power output of the laser in order to comply with eye safety guidelines. As a result of this acquisition, Allegro’s photonics portfolio now includes devices made in silicon and InGaAs, providing components for both eye-safe, long-range 1D or 2D scanned front-facing LiDAR and side- or rear-facing FLASH LiDAR. Devices based on InGaAs operate at wavelengths at which the human eye is less sensitive (1500 – 1600nm), enabling higher laser power levels for longer range object detection beyond 200 meters.

“We are combining Voxtel’s proven LiDAR technology born out of an impressive history in ranging and space applications, with Allegro’s automotive expertise, world class IC design, proven quality systems, and high-volume manufacturing proficiency,” said Mike Doogue, Senior Vice President of Business Development. “Our OEM and Tier-1 customers will now have access to this advanced technology with Allegro’s assurance of world-class global support and the scale needed to support automotive manufacturing volumes.”

About Voxtel, Inc. and the Acquisition

Headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon, Voxtel, Inc. was founded in 1999.  For almost two decades, Voxtel has maintained a focus on innovating laser ranging, LADAR, and LiDAR technologies, becoming a leading developer, manufacturer and supplier of innovative photonic and advanced 3D imaging technologies. Voxtel’s product portfolio includes eye-safe lasers; time-of-flight (TOF) ROICs; and single-pixel, 1D, and 2D photodetectors fabricated in both silicon and InGaAs.

In addition to the portfolio of advanced electro-optical solutions, the transaction includes Voxtel’s ongoing business addressing a broad range of applications, including robotics, drones, heavy equipment, mapping/surveying, environmental monitoring, defense, and space exploration; as well as its IP portfolio, including patents and in-process R&D; and an experienced team of engineers and scientists. Voxtel’s President and Chief Executive Officer, George M. Williams Jr., will become Allegro MicroSystems’ Photonics Fellow. For more information about Voxtel products and technology, visit

About Allegro MicroSystems

Allegro MicroSystems is redefining the future of sensing and power technologies. From green energy to advanced mobility and motion control systems, our team is passionate about developing intelligent solutions that move the world forward and give our customers a competitive edge.

With global engineering, manufacturing and support, Allegro is a trusted partner to both large enterprises and regional market leaders worldwide. For more information, visit

Voxtel Receives DARPA ReImagine Program Award for Software Reconfigurable Imaging and Ranging Sensor for Autonomous Navigation and Military Imaging

July 25, 2017

Conceptual image of autonomous automobile navigation

Voxtel’s multi-mode fused image sensor, currenlty being developed in DARPA’s ReImagine program, would enable autonomous navigation from a small-sized LADAR system that requires less laser power and less computer processing. [Source: Voxtel artist concept]

Voxtel Inc. has been awarded the first phase of a potential $5.2 million contract by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for the Reconfigurable Imaging (ReImagine) program.

Voxtel is developing a multi-mode fused image sensor that integrates short-wavelength infrared (SWIR) passive imaging and laser detection and radar (LADAR) sensing in the same imager.

Similar to a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) processor, the field-programmable imaging array (FPIA) architecture that Voxtel is developing in the ReImagine program would incorporate dynamically reconfigurable pixel elements, so that separate regions of the focal plane array may run separately at high resolution, at high frame rate, or in active time-of-flight mode, enabling on-focal-plane object detection and extraction, along with pixel-registered sensor fusion.

By designing multi-mode passive- and active-imaging algorithms implemented at the pixel level with reconfigurable on-focal-plane processing, the technology would allow autonomous object detection and imager configuration, with efficient extraction of relevant information.

“Our multi-mode fused image sensor would greatly benefit applications that require significant laser power, like LADAR-assisted automotive navigation,” states Voxtel CEO George Williams, “By using laser pulse energy only where the scene requires it, Voxtel can make systems that are smaller, less-expensive, more efficient at scene extraction, and require less processing.”

DARPA’s ReImagine program seeks to develop a software-reconfigurable, multi-mode imager that can adapt to different conditions in a scene and autonomously reconfigure itself to collect the most valuable information in the scene.

An approximately three-year contract under the auspices of the ReImagine program was awarded to Voxtel in May, 2017.  In addition to use in autonomous automobile navigation and driver assistance systems, military applications would include multi-mode imaging for helmet-mounted, weapon-mounted, and unmanned-vehicle systems.

About Voxtel, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Voxtel, Inc. of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of laser-ranging and 3D-imaging systems, eyesafe DPSS lasers, avalanche photodiode (APD) InGaAs detectors and scanned lidar and laser-ranging photoreceivers, and focal plane arrays (FPAs).

For more information, visit, call 971-223-5646 x112, or email


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Voxtel Awarded DARPA Contract for Nano-to-Macro Scale Manufacturing

March 7, 2016

 Voxtel, Inc. has been awarded the first increment of a $5.9 million contract from Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) to explore manufacturing processes scalable from the nanoscale to the macroscale. The effort—funded under DARPA’s Atoms to Products (A2P) program with additional support from the Oregon Nanomaterials and Microelectronics Institute (ONAMI)—aims to revolutionize the capabilities of additive manufacturing.

Under the A2P program, and working with Oregon State University (OSU) researcher Dr. Vincent Remcho, Voxtel is using synthetic DNA to encode nanoparticles that self-assemble into complex heterogeneous structures, integrating optical, electronic, and mechanical elements.

“By harnessing the quantum properties available at the nanoscale in commercially viable products, Voxtel’s work with DARPA under the A2P program will form the backbone of tomorrow’s manufacturing technologies,” states George Williams, Voxtel’s CEO. “The technologies we are developing are the future of multi-materials additive manufacturing. They will allow products to be made, starting with basic chemicals, using low-cost, 3D printing to deliver materials that assemble themselves into functioning devices, which then assemble into complex heterogeneous systems.”

For over a decade, Voxtel has been developing low-cost nanoscale manufacturing methods. The ability to manufacture large, complex structures from simple chemical components is found throughout nature. The infinite complexity of trees, for example, comes from simple genetic codes and common chemical reactions. These codes and reactions allow molecules to self-assemble—from the atomic level—into large structures—such as leaves and branches—that fuel themselves. An analog to this ability—one that can be scaled to a commercial manufacturing environment—does not exist. While expensive subtractive semiconductor processes are used to fabricate submicron integrated circuits, and industrial tooling is used to manufacture large objects, such as cars, there is no manufacturing process that scales from the atomic level to the macro level. Additive-manufacturing approaches that have received attention over the last few years, such as 3D printing, are generally limited to single materials and do not harness the properties of materials at the micron or submicron scale.

The goal of the A2P program is to develop technologies and processes required to assemble nanometer-scale pieces—with dimensions near the size of atoms—into systems, components, or materials that are at least millimeter-scale in size.

Voxtel previously worked with DARPA on the Manufacturable Gradient Index Optics (M-GRIN) program to develop methods to manufacture inkjet-printed flat optics using nanoparticles.  These technologies are now being commercialized in the Voxtel spin-out Vadient Optics, located in Corvallis, OR.

About Voxtel, Inc.

Voxtel Inc, headquartered in Beaverton, OR, with laboratories in Corvallis and Eugene, OR, specializes in advanced 3D imaging and nanophotonics products.

For more information, visit, call 971-223-5646 x112, or email


Voxtel Raises the Bar Again with the ROX™ Rx Series Lowest Cost, Best Performance Eye-Safe LRF Receivers

May 1, 2015

Delivering cascading improvements in performance and costROX Laser Rangefinder Receiver

Beaverton, Ore., May 1, 2015  Voxtel, Inc. announces enhanced performance and lower price points in its ROX™ Rx series of eye-safe rangefinder receivers (Rx). Compared to the previous generation of industry-leading ROX receivers, the new 100-MHz, 200-µm model (m/n RVC1-NIAC) delivers 50% improvement in sensitivity at half the cost. To enable Voxtel customers to produce ranging systems that are smaller and less expensive than others, Voxtel designed the ROX Rx series of LRF receivers for high sensitivity with low false alarm rates.

“The latest version of our ROX Rx continues to raise the bar enabling our customers to use lower power eye-safe lasers in small, compact systems,” says Voxtel President George Williams, “and when system integrators can incorporate low-power lasers, entire systems shrink in size, weight, power and cost.  Our product improvements enable a new class of rangefinders that are safer to use.”

The ROX Rx series of rangefinder receiver integrates Voxtel’s proprietary high-performance InGaAs avalanche photodiodes (APDs), custom-designed CMOS application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs), and programmable processing circuits to provide flexible system integration, programmable functionality, and reliable performance, all in a small TO-8 package.

Compared to standard photodiode detectors (PIN detectors), Voxtel’s high-gain, low-noise APD provides half the excess noise and superior avalanche gain—up to M = 25—allowing superior range and low false alarm rate. With a 0.5 nW noise equivalent power (NEP), optimal sensitivity is achieved, with linear dynamic range of 25 db, total dynamic range of 70 dB, and 100 mW of overload protection.

Easy to operate and integrate, the ROX Rx technology integrates custom ASICs and programmable features that allow the APD gain to be stabilized over the -40 °C to 80 °C temperature range, and allowing performance to be optimized without the use of thermoelectric cooling. The multiple user-programmable or factory conditions also allow automatic optimization of APD sensitivity over the wide temperature range, or operation in multiple modes for various concepts of operation. The programmable gain and range-variable threshold features allow for the ROX Rx to be quickly configured for new applications and operating conditions. Time-over-threshold features reduce range walk error.

The control capability of the ROX Rx technology includes damage protection of up to 6 MW/cm2 of peak power, and its highly integrated design makes it robust against gun shock and other harsh operating environments.

About Voxtel, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Voxtel, Inc. of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of 3D imaging systems, eye-safe lasers, and avalanche photodiode (APD) detectors and focal plane arrays (FPAs).

For more information, visit, call 971-223-5646 x119, or email

Voxtel Launches New Class of High-Performance Eye-Safe Micro-Laser Rangefinders

April 20, 2015

Micro-miniature eye-safe laser rangefinder (µLRF) achieves single-shot ranging to 3 km with 100-mm precision

Delivering the highest performance in its class

The ROX uLRF series of micro-laser rangefinders delivers the highest performance in its class.

Beaverton, Ore., April 20, 2015 – Voxtel Inc. is introducing the ROX™ µLRF series of micro-laser rangefinder. Smaller than a keyboard mouse, this new class of high-performance, eye-safe laser rangefinder in an extremely compact, lightweight package is designed for use by high-performance consumer, industrial, and military system integrators.

“We’re delivering safety and unprecedented performance to a host of cost-sensitive applications,” says Voxtel President George Williams.

In applications like hunting and sporting, survey, mapping, altimetry, and UAV-mounted ranging and surveillance, many of today’s products use lasers that—when used at the power levels needed by the application requirements—are not eye-safe, and a tradeoff is made between safety and performance. Lasers operating at eye-safe wavelengths improve the capabilities of all these applications because beam power and quality need not be compromised.

“Voxtel customers want portable, cost-effective, accurate data at long range whether it’s raining or not, and they want to get that data without risk of injury. We’re delivering that capability to the market for the first time,” says Williams.

The ROX  µLRF series of micro-laser rangefinder is the culmination of Voxtel’s efforts developing and refining its ROX technology over the last decade. The ROX µLRF combines low-divergence diffraction-limited eye-safe laser pulses with Voxtel’s state-of-the-art APD receiver to achieve the most sensitive, highest performing rangefinder in its size and weight class. Unlike non-eye-safe solutions, the waterproof ROX series micro-laser rangefinder delivers reliable ranging of targets under direct sunlight, night time and low visibility conditions including fog, rain and snow.

The ROX uLRF integrates a ROX Rx series highly sensitive InGaAs APD receivers; a ROX Tx series small-form-factor eye-safe diode-pumped solid-state lasers; a visible aiming laser; and custom pulse-processing circuits.


About Voxtel, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Voxtel, Inc. of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of 3D imaging systems, eye-safe lasers, and avalanche photodiode (APD) detectors and focal plane arrays (FPAs).

For more information, visit, call 971-223-5646 x119, or email


Voxtel Introduces the ROX™ Series Eye-Safe Micro-Laser Rangefinder (LRF) Module

May 22, 2014

LRF OEM ModuleMicro-LRF Achieves Single-Shot Ranging to 5 km with 200-mm Precision

Beaverton, Ore., May 22, 2014 – Voxtel, Inc. announces the release of the ROX™ series eye-safe micro-laser rangefinder (LRF) module. Designed for turnkey integration by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), the new product delivers unprecedented capability in an extremely compact, low-power, low-cost module.

“By custom designing the detector and laser sources, we reduced the ROX LRF module to about the size of a credit card, while achieving the capability to single-pulse range a man-sized target to five kilometers with a precision better than 200 mm,” says Voxtel CEO George Williams, “and an optional capability can extend ranging to 10 kilometers.”

For comparison, today’s eye-safe rangefinders with similar performance are the size of a shoebox, and rangefinders with comparable size only range to about 50 feet.

At a fraction of the cost of other high-performance solutions, the ROX module can be integrated into rifle scopes or cell phone-sized handheld rangefinders, and is poised to reduce significantly the size, weight and cost of handheld and scope-, UAV- and weapon-mounted rangefinders.

The ROX LRF module features a high-gain, low-noise, indium-gallium-arsenide (InGaAs) avalanche photodiode (APD) receiver that allows for low-power laser operations without compromising range or resolution and an ultra-miniature, low-power, 30-kW peak power, 100-µJ pulse energy, diode-pumped solid-state (DPSS), 1535-nm laser.

In addition to reduced size, the low power consumption of 800 mW while ranging leads to extended battery life; the ROX module can acquire range data 189,000 times on a single standard CR123 battery. The turnkey LRF module, provides temperature-compensated performance, and is fully programmable, allowing for easy implementation of user-specific features and operating modes.

Voxtel’s LRF module achieves high sensitivity with better than 0.8 nW noise equivalent power (NEP), dynamic range of 70 db, and excellent damage threshold levels of 6 MW/cm2. Designed for operation in harsh environments, the module is qualified to MIL-STD-833 and MIL-STD-202 and offers a lifetime of 200 million shots.

About Voxtel, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Voxtel, Inc. of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of 3D imaging systems, eye-safe lasers, and avalanche photodiode (APD) detectors and focal plane arrays (FPAs).

For more information, visit, call 971-223-5646 x119, or email


Voxtel Introduces Lowest Cost 64-channel Time-to-digital Converter

April 25, 2013

High-energy event time-stamp can reduce the cost of military systems


Beaverton, Ore., April 25, 2013Voxtel, Inc. has announced the release of a low-cost event-timing solution for medical imaging, particle and nuclear physics, and LADAR applications requiring picosecond-scale timing on a large number of parallel channels. The 64-channel time-to-digital convertor (TDC) is designed for cost-sensitive, high channel count applications that require accurate conversion of a time interval into a digital output.

“Our engineers designed a high channel count time-to-digital converter, and they achieved picosecond scale timing resolution with the lowest cost-per-channel available on the market today,” says Voxtel founder and CEO George Williams.

TDCs help to determine the time an event occurs by generating the time difference between the leading edge of a common reference signal and the leading edge of an input pulse event. Voxtel’s all-digital TDC YVX-657 time-stamps incoming signal pulses arriving simultaneously on all 64 channels and has on-board capacity to store up to 262,144 time stamps per channel—with a precision of 32 picoseconds.

For input signal tallying, the TDC can also be used as a free-running high-resolution counter, where each individual channel can record and store in local memory the time of arrival of the rising edge of input signals.

See the TDC YVX-657 and learn how Voxtel can reduce your system costs at SPIE Defense, Security and Sensing 2013, booth 2048, April 30 through May 2 in Baltimore, Md., or contact us directly at

About Voxtel, Inc.

Voxtel, Inc., of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of sophisticated time-of-flight detectors and 3D electro-optical imaging systems for a wide range of government, industrial and scientific markets. Voxtel’s product technologies include highly sensitive APDs, laser radar (LADAR) receivers and active/passive focal plane arrays. For more information, visit Voxtel’s website at



Voxtel, Inc.
15985 NW Schendel Ave., #200
Beaverton, OR 97006
(971) 223-5642

Voxtel Awarded Contract to Develop New Optical Technologies for NASA

April 9, 2013

Light-steering techniques will break the half-millennium standstill in optical lens technology and open a new field of transformational optics.


Beaverton, Ore., April 9, 2013Voxtel, Inc. announces it was awarded a contract to develop novel nanostructured optical technologies for NASA. Working in cooperation with the University of Oregon, under sponsorship of Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI), Voxtel will use 3D inkjet printing techniques to transform the field of optics.

“Optical lens technology is one of the few items we use daily that hasn’t changed significantly in our lifetimes. Lenses are designed using the same principles developed more than 500 years ago, and camera lenses made more than 50 years ago may still outperform those made today,” says George Williams, Voxtel  founder and President.

Voxtel nanotechnology is developed using an additive manufacturing technologies approach. By redesigning from the bottom up, Voxtel will create lenses that “steer” light as it passes through the transparent nanocomposite optical elements. This will allow fabrication of smaller, lightweight lenses, with new capabilities.

In addition to enabling a new technology field of transformational optics, the technology has importance for CMOS-compatible photonics and optical display technologies.

Under the $150,000 first-phase effort, Voxtel’s nanotechnology group, VoxtelNano, will develop high-performance microlens arrays that can be printed directly onto silicon imagers using 3D inkjet printing.  To advance microlens technology rapidly, the initial funding is anticipated to be followed by a second phase $750,000 effort to further develop the technology.

Voxtel also has continuing sponsorship from DARPA and its Manufacturable Gradient Index (M-GRIN) Optics program to apply the 3D inkjet-printed gradient index optics technology to manufacture smaller, lighter weight night vision goggle lenses that will improve the capabilities of warfighters.

About Voxtel, Inc.

Voxtel, Inc., of Beaverton, Ore., is a leading supplier of sophisticated time-of-flight detectors and 3D electro-optical imaging systems for a wide range of government, industrial and scientific markets. Voxtel’s product technologies include highly sensitive APDs, laser radar (LADAR) receivers and active/passive focal plane arrays. For more information, visit Voxtel’s website at


For more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with VoxtelNano Program Manager Paul Harmon, please call (541) 346-8611or email