The Road to Success Requires Diversification

When I was first introduced to 3DIcon in late 2013, before it became Coretec, the company was trying to commercialize a novel 3D volumetric display based on a technology that initially used two laser beams that, when intersected, would create light emission in doped glass. When their movement was synchronized, a linear path of light emission could be created. 

We demonstrated that we could now create an image similar to what you see on a printed page using a laser beam spread over the width of the doped glass, intersected with an image of laser light from a digital light projector. We synchronized the movement of the laser beam with a changing, projected image using digital light processing (DLP) which gave us the desired 3D volumetric display within the doped glass – an exciting milestone for the company. 

Despite this success, over time we found that scaling the technology proved far more difficult than anyone expected. Furthermore, competing 3D volumetric display technologies have found the market to be illusive, to this day, even with a significant reduction in manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP). Virtual reality companies have found similar challenges even after spending billions to create their products and are left with solutions that often don’t have tremendous buyer interest.

After a period of reflection, we concluded that 3DIcon could not depend on the creation and success of this single product and would be well served to diversify with the creation of  a second, yet still related, product. After extensive research, we found that cyclohexasilane (CHS) was an ideal candidate because of the broad applications this unique silicon material has in markets with growing demand, the minimal competitor landscape, our access to initial CHS strategic partner Gelest and our understanding at the time that proof of concept had been completed and IP developed. This decision ultimately led to a merger and the formation of Coretec. 

While I still believe this was the right decision for 3DIcon at the time, the CHS technology proved much less mature than expected, requiring years to enter the market. Thanks to patient investors, the leadership of a new CEO, Michael Kraft, a highly capable new VP of Technology, Ramez Elgammal, a new patent pending CHS synthesis route, and a global chemical company and strategic partner Evonik, the Coretec Team is committed to introducing CHS as a new product into their portfolio, and now has the opportunity to create value for their investors in a reasonable period of time. 

What I find most interesting is that Coretec started out as a light generation company, and it is still a light generation company. Now, it just happens to also be a supplier of the value added material technology that, in one of many applications, when formed into a quantum dot, will emit light at a wavelength that offers even greater value in its ability to be an antimicrobial that kills bacteria, viruses, or molds, can enable high power LEDs, and grow plants with enhanced attributes.

Doug Freitag is the owner of Bayside Materials Technology and brings 38 years of expertise in developing, commercializing, and financing new technologies. He formed Bayside Materials Technology (BMT) in 1993 after a successful career in various management and engineering roles while employed by Lockheed Martin, Honeywell, and Ford Motor Company. BMT was formed to support academia, investors and industry with the process of identifying, creating and commercializing new technologies where the Federal Government plays a role, either as an investor, regulator or user. BMT routinely works with all aspects of the Federal Government in areas of a policy, regulatory, procurement, or R&D funding nature.  Technologies/markets served include electronics, optics, photonics, life sciences, biotech, transportation, industrial processing, infrastructure, power & energy, water, defense, etc. Mr. Freitag has a technical background with a B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University. He has published and presented over seventy papers in advanced technologies and their commercialization, issued several patents, organized and chaired numerous technical sessions at national meetings, and participated in various government panels. He currently serves as the Technical Director for the US Advanced Ceramics Association and holds a Secret level DOD clearance.