Optofab Adelaide


Optofab Adelaide is part of the Optofab node of the Australian National Fabrication Facility (ANFF). Established under the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy, the ANFF links 8 university-based nodes to provide researchers and industry with access to state-of-the-art fabrication facilities. The capability provided by the ANFF enables users to process hard materials (metals, composites and ceramics) and soft materials (polymers and polymer-biological moieties) and transform these into structures that have application in sensors, medical devices, nanophotonics and nanoelectronics.

The Optofab node consists of four centres of facilities and expertise based at Macquarie University, Bandwidth Foundry International, University of Sydney and the University of Adelaide. The Node has experts on hand to assist researchers, experienced in meeting user requirements and maintaining leading-edge equipment and instrumentation. Clients are able to either work at the node under expert guidance, or to contract for specialised products to be fabricated.

The Adelaide node of Optofab provides facilities and expertise in specialised glass and fibre fabrication, glass fibre surface functionalisation and advanced manufacturing. Whatever your fabrication requirements, if we can’t facilitate your needs within the Adelaide node, we can put you in contact with someone in the ANFF that can.


Products and services

Specialised Glass and Fibre

The Adelaide node of Optofab has a rare combination of glass science, fibre fabrication, research facilities and expertise. This has enabled the realisation of fibres with unique and novel properties. With expertise spanning the full spectrum of glass materials from silica to soft glasses, has enabled the internationally leading team in glass extrusion at Optofab to build upon their achievements to date which includes the production of glass fibres with the broadest range of structures, unmatched anywhere else in the world.


Surface Functionalization

Surface functionalization takes a material whose surface chemistry is dictated by that material’s surface composition and surface properties, and attaches to it specific chemical functional groups, or biochemical functionalities, to impart tailored physical, chemical, or biochemical properties to that material’s surface. For example, a material’s optical properties can be changed, or the introduction of specific functional groups to react in controlled ways with molecules in fluids. It can also include the introduction of receptors for adding chemical or biochemical specificity to a sensor surface. Bulk glass, planar wave guides and fibre surfaces can be functionalised, both internally and externally, allowing the production for example, of novel optical based fibre sensors.


Advanced Manufacturing

3D printing facilitates rapid prototyping and manufacturing, allowing for the fast availability of functional prototypes for product development, as well as on demand manufacturing for research and industry requirements. Optofab Adelaide can provide your metal 3D printing needs directly from your CAD drawings, on its ProX200 selective laser melting printer. 3D printing complements traditional development and manufacturing methods and reduce the time and cost of designing metal or ceramic parts by printing them directly from digital input. 3D printing will speed your iterative design and allow designers, researchers and industry to print prototypes in hours, obtain feedback, refine designs, and allow identification of design errors early and allow quick repeat of the cycle until designs are perfected.


New high-tech materials and much higher demands being placed on surface quality and precision have made the utilisation of new manufacturing technologies and machining methods indispensable. Optofab’s DMG Ultrasonic 20 linear offers the perfect solution by combining precision and versatility at a level of efficiency that was inconceivable only a few years ago. Specialised machining is now available at Optofab Adelaide for soft, hard and advanced high-performance materials which have been traditionally difficult to machine. By the kinematic superposition of the tool rotation with an additional oscillation, these traditionally difficult to machine high-performance materials can now be machined with excellent results. From medical and dental, to precision optical, engineering and aerospace, Optofab Adelaide can provide the solution to your machining requirements.


Type Manufacturer Model Technical Specifications
5-axis CNC Ultrasonic DMG DMU-20 Linear  
3D Metal Printer Heathway S5XL – 4.5-23  
Modified Chemical Vapour Deposition Lathe (MCVD) Heathway S5XL – 4.5-23  
Fibre Draw Tower (soft glass) Heathway 4 meter  
Fibre Draw tower (silica) Heathway 6 meter  
Billet extruders   100kN and 250kN  
Glass melting equipment     Up to 1300oC
Glass annealing equipment     Up to 500oC
Simultaneous Thermal Analysis Perkin Elmer STA 6000  
Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy Perkin Elmer Spectrum 400  
Ellipsometer J.A. Woollam IR-VASE  
Optical Profiler Bruker ContourGT  
Spectrophotometer Agilent Cary 5000 UV-Vis-NIR  
Name Description
Advanced manufacturing 3D metal printing and CNC machining
Glass and fibres Specialised glass and fibre manufacture
Glass and polymer billet extrusion Preform glass and polymer extrusion
Glass and fibre functionalisation Surface chemistry functionalization
Characterisation instruments Optical, chemical and surface
Glass surface preparation Cutting, etching and polishing equipment



 Luis  Lima-Marques

Facility Manager


North Terrace campus
Level 1, The Braggs Building
The University of Adelaide
Adelaide SA 5005