ITT Exelis (NYSE: XLS) successfully completed an optical fabrication contract for the University of Rochester’s Lab for Laser Energetics. Under an initiative sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, the University’s Lab is conducting studies using lasers to create alternate sources of energy. The experiments involve the use of distributed phase plates, provided by Exelis, to shape the laser beam. One pound of fusion fuel can produce the same energy as five-thousand tons of coal and does not create long-lasting radioactive waste, greenhouse gases or other harmful pollutants. “This contract shows the continuous evolution of the precision optics business to support the needs of the laser optics market,” said Dan Adams, director of Geospatial Systems Precision Optics. “ University of Rochester is one of the leaders in the research of optics and one of our best customers for mid- to large-sized high-energy optics. Through our partnership, we developed and delivered this solution and plan to do so for years to come. “Our partnership also includes a $2 million investment by the University in optics technology, with installation of new equipment at the Exelis site to continue to produce these very complex optical components.” Within a six-month period, 22 distributed phase plates were polished by Exelis, with a complex phase pattern imprinted on each plate. Magnetorheological finishing – a part of Exelis core optics business expertise – is a highly precise, fluid-based optical polishing method, which entails putting complex and highly detailed features on optical surfaces with very few defects. Leveraging more than 50 years of proven expertise in optics, Exelis excels in manufacturing high-quality, high-precision large optics for unique commercial and government customer needs. Exelis provides a full range of service offerings from design, technology development, manufacturing, assembly and testing to integration, to produce standard and custom solutions. High-precision large optics are used for high energy applications, commercial and government remote sensing and ground-based astronomy systems.