About

About fso instruments

FSO Instruments is a Joint Venture that develops and supplies optical-communication components, sub-systems, and terminals. FSO Instruments combines the strength of Demcon and VDL ETG, inspired by TNO technologies allowing laser satellite communication to take the step towards industrialization. We have strong heritage in Semiconductor and Aerospace, and bring this to optical communications:

  • Developing and engineering laser communication terminals
  • Modular and Standardized functional (sub-)systems for laser communication
  • Supply chain partner for cost-effective high-volume manufacturing.

what we do

Satellite Communication is a better alternative to RF (radio frequency) communications in space. Laser communication is faster, more secure and allows communication networks with low latency. The technology has been proven in a range of test environments and is now making the transition to larger scale applications that include:
• Fast internet supporting Wifi coverage in airplanes and ships
• 5G backhaul networks
• Real time networking, also for high bandwidth applications

The opportunity for industrializing Laser Satellite Communication is now. Public and private applications requiring laser satellite communication are being developed and there is a demand for solutions that not only work but can also be scaled up in commercially attractive ways. This drives the need for industrialization and higher volume manufacturing of components and assemblies for laser satellite communication.

FSO Instruments draws on the strengths that The Netherlands has to offer in laser satellite communication, building on technology developed at TNO and the engineering and manufacturing competences of parent companies Demcon and VDL. Along with their solid track record in developing solutions for aerospace applications this allows FSO a flying start.

Current applications include

  1. Micro-terminals for small satellites in LEO and MEO orbits
  2. Optical Ground Stations servicing constellations of LEO, MEO and GEO satellites
  3. Airborne applications for aircraft to satellite and aircraft to ground communications

Team

Will Crowcombe managing Director

Graduated from Imperial College London with a masters in Mechanical Engineering. Started working career within the UK Aerospace industry as a structural engineer/architect. Following that with 11 years at TNO as a principal system engineer working on cutting edge high precision space and semiconductor instrumentation. Responsibilities included being the lead Laser communication program architect.

Gus van der Feltz business development manager

Gus has a degree in Applied Physics from Delft University of Technology. Complemented with an MBA from Insead he developed a career in high tech Business Development at ASML, Philips Assembléon and Philips Lighting. Gus has experience as entrepreneur and intrapreneur bringing new technology to the market, among others for mature lithography equipment, vertical farming, and cold plasma for cleaning and disinfection.

Dorus de Lange Aerospace Program Architect

Graduated at the TU Delft with a masters in space systems engineer. Worked for 11 years at TNO on cutting edge high precision space instrumentation of which 6 years as mechanical engineer on Earth observation instruments and 5 years as systems engineer on optical communications systems.

Niels Donkers Electronics Architect

Graduated at Hogeschool Utrecht with a bachelors in electronics. Worked for 11 years at several market leading companies in the process automation industry as electronics engineer. Then worked for TNO for 4.5 years as electronics- and systems engineer for defense and aerospace.

Wimar Klop

Wimar Klop
Ground Station Program Architect

Wimar has a master's degree in embedded systems with a specialization in System & Control from the Delft University of Technology. At TNO he developed towards Senior Systems Engineer. The research he performed, focused on the high-tech industry and the space market, developing state-of-the-art solutions in instrumentation. From 2016 onwards the emphasize was on Optical Satellite Communications and Optical Ground Stations in particular.

Edu van der Noordaa

With 25+ years of experience in marketing, sales and business development in the aerospace, aircraft and defense industry, Edu is FSO's Business Development Officer for North America.

Paul Stewart

Paul Stewart
Optical Architect

Paul earned a PhD in astrophysics from the University of Sydney, with research focused on developing optical back-ends for the largest telescopes. He comes to FSO from Satellogic, where he helped build a high-volume satellite factory and building the initial optical team. He is active in the Dutch space community and completed two International Space University programs. Prior to all this, he ran an IT startup for ~5 years, and earned a BCompSci.

Non-Executive Team

Hans Priem

After having finalized his Masters in Business Economics at Tilburg University, Hans started his career with ASML. Based on his experience within Finance and Product Management, he joined Philips Electronics EMT to assume responsibility over the company's Installed Base Business. Since 2011 , Hans is with VDL ETG. He is, responsible for VDLs Science & Industry-related activities.

Gerard van den Eijkel

Graduated at Universiteit Twente in Physics, obtained his PhD at TUDelft in Electrical Engineering. Entrepreneur and intrapreneur in optomechatronics since 2004, established Focal Optics and Vision in 2008 (part of DEMCON Group), established Dutch United Instruments in 2017 (part of Demcon Group). Since 2022 director Optomechatronics at the Demcon Group, providing support in new business activities and optical systems development.

Richard Couwenbergh

After having finalized his university of applied science on mechanical engineering and a masters in Business Administration at Erasmus University Rotterdam, Richard started his career at Philips Machine factories in Eindhoven. After 10 years in several managerial operational roles, he started at VDL ETG Almelo, where he was part of the management team as operations manager. Last 10 years he is active in Sales resulting in this latest function as Business Development Manager for VDL ETG Almelo.