The 2022 annual general meeting of LIPA (Laser Illuminated Projector Association) will mark a turning point for the body. When Dr. Goran Stojmenovik retires as chair, it will see the end of Barco’s eight-year run heading the industry body. The previous chair, Jan Daem, was also from Barco. A founding member of LIPA in 2011, Barco still intends to play “a very active role” moving forward.
LIPA’s role is to present the world with a single industry voice when it comes to rationalizing laser regulations. One example is the governmental regulations that put onerous and costly requirements on the cinema exhibitors that integrate laser engines into their projectors. LIPA has had some success with better explaining the industry’s position, noting that regulators prefer that the industry stakeholders speak with a single unified voice.
Stojmenovik’s tenure was marked by what he calls “market education”, providing science-based responses to regulatory issues. These have included articles, interviews, webinars, white papers and blog articles. “This body of work now constitutes a bank of material for rationalization and education around technical and regulatory topics,” according to Stojmenovik.
LIPA also worked the optical hazard department of the FDA in the US. This led to the easing of some requirements for laser illuminated projectors, notably reducing their minimum height from 3 meters to 2.5 in some cases. “The goal was to avoid people getting the light in their eyes from too close,” he says. “The requirement is there for safety purposes, which we understand. But it also has to be rational.”
The Covid restrictions also provided a challenge, with LIPA struggling to continue “engaging with the LIPA community” during lockdown. The annual general and board meetings of 2020 and 2021 were moved online. Webinars kept people in touch and the ten-year celebration of LIPA was done online.
Aptly, Barco’s eight-year chairmanship of LIPA will close with the 2023 board and annual general meetings that it will host at its campus in Kortrijk, Belgium.
Over the last four years, LIPA’s membership fluctuated with comings and goings but has remained stable overall. Stojmenovik can still see lots of work for the body over the next four years. “All the standards governing laser projections – notably cinema – are up for review. So it’s important the industry’s voice is heard.” He compares it to the early days of LIPA when legislation and standards were being written worldwide. Now new standards are appearing, notably in emerging markets. “We need to follow these developments. A lot has changed in the laser market, so it’s not easy to predict what will happen.”
Barco is a global technology leader that develops networked visualization solutions for the entertainment, enterprise, and healthcare markets. Our solutions make a visible impact, allowing people to enjoy compelling entertainment experiences; to foster knowledge sharing and smart decision-making in organizations and to help hospitals provide their patients with the best possible healthcare.
Headquartered in Kortrijk (Belgium), Barco realized sales of 804 million euro in 2021 and has a global team of 3,000+ employees, whose passion for technology is captured in +500 granted patents. Barco has been listed on the Brussels Stock Exchange since 1985. (Euronext: BAR; Reuters: BARBt.BR; Bloomberg: BAR BB)
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