BOZEMAN, Mont. — Sen. Steve Daines hosted a roundtable discussion at Ascent Vision to highlight leaders in the optics and photonics industry on Thursday.
Photonics is the science and technology of generating, detecting and controlling light. The industry is made up of companies that use, create and research light-based technologies.
Daines says the optics and photonics industry is growing and there are 35 businesses around the state.
He says the industry employs over 800 Montanans.
Businesses range from quantum computing, healthcare and energy to precision agriculture, manufacturing and transportation.
Daines says this industry is crucial to keep Montana growing.
“I think that many Montanans aren’t aware of how important this industry is and what it’s doing for our economy, for healthcare, for defense, for communications,” Daines said. “This is Montana innovation, right here in our state. These are products invented and made by Montanans.”
Daines is the co-chairman of the Optics and Photonics Caucus in the Senate.
He says they’re working on legislation to support more research for the optics and photonics industry.