In 2017, Surface Optics Corporation is commemorating it’s 40th Anniversary and celebrating the contributions we’ve made to optical property characterization technology as well as the achievements of our customers over the last four decades. Surface Optics was incorporated on May 5, 1977, in San Diego, California and is in large part a company born out of the Space Race and the extensive research efforts made by the United States to land a man on the moon.
This achievement was the result of thousands of men and women at many aerospace firms working to solve the intricate technical challenges of Project Apollo. During this time at the Convair Division of General Dynamics, Dr. Ternay Neu and Mr. Dick Dummer developed optical property modeling that served as a backup system to Apollo 11’s primary radar for rendezvous and docking of the Lunar Module with the Command Module.
In 1977, Neu and Dummer took their combined expertise and founded Surface Optics Corporation to provide optical property measurements to the military and aerospace industries. A major contract in those early years (and continuing today) was providing crucial software and measurements for the Ballistic Missile Defense agency’s Optical Signature Code (OSC) program.