about us

The Story of Potomac

Since 1982, Potomac has been recognized by both commercial and government agencies for innovative contributions to areas such as medical device manufacturing, biotech and electronics fabrication. Its high tech facility is located at [email protected] Research and Technology Park in Baltimore, MD.

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38 Years of Experience

Potomac Photonics, a leader microfabrication, has an extensive history of helping its clients develop miniature products and bring them to market quickly and cost effectively. Utilizing a broad range of technologies, Potomac can micromachine most materials such as polymers, metals, ceramics, and glass with feature sizes that cannot be achieved using conventional processes. From single prototypes to millions of parts in production, there truly is no faster or better way to have your parts fabricated.

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Your Future Best Friend

Building strong, long-term partnerships is a cornerstone to Potomac’s way of doing business. It is our goal to go beyond the mere fabrication of parts, as we prefer to partner on projects from their initial prototyping phases and take them all the way through product realization. We have always prided ourselves on providing total solutions and adding value to our partners as they develop and introduce their products to market. To that end, we have not only taking on the challenges of using novel materials and production methods, but have also taken on assembly and supply chain management responsibilities.

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We’re Easy To Deal With

To initiate the process, simply enter our online machine shop, select your material, and upload your drawing. Shortly thereafter, a technical specialist will either contact you to discuss your application or send you a proposal. Once the order is placed, your custom micro parts can be quickly produced in a short time ranging from a few hours to a few days, depending on complexity and volume.

our team

Leadership

Mike Adelstein
President and CEO

Mike Adelstein has spent his career at Potomac working with industry leaders, inventors, researchers and entrepreneurs to quickly bring new products to market through digital rapid prototyping that can then ramp up to high volume production manufacturing. Integrating a wide range of digital fabrication technologies such as laser micromachining, 3D Printing, factory automation, micro-CNC precision machining, machine vision and more, he has enabled Potomac to optimize designs for manufacturing by working iteratively with customers.

Degrees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County [UMBC] allow Mike Adelstein to understand the science-based intricacies required to bring microfluidics, biotech and medical device ideas to life. His more than 20 years experience working with Potomac’s digital fabrication pioneers, bridges engineering and biological systems for the best solutions to today’s multi-disciplinary challenges.

Quality performance is a central platform in Mr. Adelstein’s strategy. He has brought Potomac into compliance with ISO13485 standards. With an MS in Technology Management and as a Certified Public Accountant [CPA], all aspects of Potomac’s infrastructure are integrated to ensure quality across functions.

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Ben Adelstein
Chief Technology Officer

Ben Adelstein has over 20 years of domestic and international experience leading engineering and R&D projects and teams commercializing bio-chemical, renewable energy and water purification technologies from proof-of-concept and design through commercial manufacturing.  He has served in a variety of engineering and technical leadership roles at multinational companies and biotechnology start-ups in the areas of Process Engineering, Development, Scale-Up, Product Development, Technology Transfer and Design Engineering.  He holds degrees in both chemical engineering and international relations & affairs is a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, the American Institute of Chemical Engineer, the American Chemistry Society and is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of California. In addition to his role at Potomac he is co-authoring a text book on the applications of microfluidics in biotechnology.

 

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C. Paul Christensen
Founder, Director and Technology Advisor

Paul is the founder of the Company and a world expert in laser systems and micromachining. He has 37 years experience in research, development and marketing of technology associated with lasers and laser applications. He has a BSEE degree, a MSEE from MIT, and a PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. Following his degree work, he served for six years on the research faculty in the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California. In 1979, Dr. Christensen received a two-year appointment from the National Science Foundation to direct its Quantum Electronics, Waves, and Beams Program.

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Mike Davis
Mike Davis
Vice President - Manufacturing

Mike arrived on Potomac’s doorstep with his B.A. in English in hand to begin what has become quite an adventure. As a Sales and Marketing Administrator, he helped to bring in business for what was then a fledgling contract manufacturing group at Potomac. Within a year, it became clear that this venture was growing faster than anyone had anticipated. To further contribute, Mike began building a Quality System. Soon he, through the Maryland ISO Consortium, became a certified Lead Assessor. Taking this knowledge and experience, he developed and implemented Potomac’s ISO Quality Management System and led them to successful ISO 9001:2000 certification in January of 2004. To things a step further, Mike then led Potomac to ISO 13485:2003 certification a few short years later. Understanding all along that to truly contribute to complete quality he had to completely understand all of the technology and what went into it, Mike studied and became very proficient with Potomac’s laser technologies. Eventually, he reached the point where he was assembling some of the production laser systems, creating programs, developing customer applications in R&D and production, and training all of the technicians. So, in the natural progression of things, Mike moved into the role of Director of Operations for Potomac. His next challenge? Well, as Potomac begins to head in this exciting, new direction, he will be tasked with updating and upgrading Potomac’s facility to make it a leading edge micro manufacturing facility. When not assaulting innocent polymers with laser beams, Mike hangs out with his family, engages in a variety of sports, enjoys nice micro-brews, and, every now and then, escapes to Canada to get away from it all.

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Sherry L. Ford
Vice President

Ms. Ford is a fifteen year veteran of the Company and has been instrumental in the success of Potomac. In addition to serving as the Company’s Controller, she is responsible for human resources and administration. She acts in the capacity of expeditor of Potomac’s three (3) largest client assignments. Prior to joining Potomac in 1996 she worked for three years at the National Association of Manufacturers assisting the President of Small Manufacturers Forum, an organization which serves the needs of 40 Small Manufacturing Board members. She is currently completing her degree in Accounting from the University of Maryland.

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Sidney Wright
Vice President - Sales

Sidney is Potomac’s Vice President of Sales and previously worked at Potomac from 1996 to 2006. Initially working as Sales Engineer and then Director of Business Development, Sidney later switched sides to be the Technical Lead for the Microfabrication Center handling customer’s samples and setting up laser systems and training technicians for production operations. He has over 30 years of experience in the laser field covering a wide range of lasers both in the sales/marketing and technical areas with companies such as the DOE facilities at Oak Ridge, TN, Coherent, Schwartz Electro-Optics, L-3 ALST and others. His passion for laser micromachining and microfabrication along with this wide range of experience is brought to every interaction with Potomac’s customers. Sidney holds a BS degree in physics from Tenn. Tech Univ., a MS degree in physics from Univ. of Tenn., Knoxville, and one US patent for marking gem stones with lasers.

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Mike Adelstein has spent his career at Potomac working with industry leaders, inventors, researchers and entrepreneurs to quickly bring new products to market through digital rapid prototyping that can then ramp up to high volume production manufacturing. Integrating a wide range of digital fabrication technologies such as laser micromachining, 3D Printing, factory automation, micro-CNC precision machining, machine vision and more, he has enabled Potomac to optimize designs for manufacturing by working iteratively with customers.

Degrees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County [UMBC] allow Mike Adelstein to understand the science-based intricacies required to bring microfluidics, biotech and medical device ideas to life. His more than 20 years experience working with Potomac’s digital fabrication pioneers, bridges engineering and biological systems for the best solutions to today’s multi-disciplinary challenges.

Quality performance is a central platform in Mr. Adelstein’s strategy. He has brought Potomac into compliance with ISO13485 standards. With an MS in Technology Management and as a Certified Public Accountant [CPA], all aspects of Potomac’s infrastructure are integrated to ensure quality across functions.

Read more

Ben Adelstein has over 20 years of domestic and international experience leading engineering and R&D projects and teams commercializing bio-chemical, renewable energy and water purification technologies from proof-of-concept and design through commercial manufacturing.  He has served in a variety of engineering and technical leadership roles at multinational companies and biotechnology start-ups in the areas of Process Engineering, Development, Scale-Up, Product Development, Technology Transfer and Design Engineering.  He holds degrees in both chemical engineering and international relations & affairs is a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, the American Institute of Chemical Engineer, the American Chemistry Society and is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of California. In addition to his role at Potomac he is co-authoring a text book on the applications of microfluidics in biotechnology.

 

Read more

Paul is the founder of the Company and a world expert in laser systems and micromachining. He has 37 years experience in research, development and marketing of technology associated with lasers and laser applications. He has a BSEE degree, a MSEE from MIT, and a PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. Following his degree work, he served for six years on the research faculty in the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California. In 1979, Dr. Christensen received a two-year appointment from the National Science Foundation to direct its Quantum Electronics, Waves, and Beams Program.

Read more

Mike arrived on Potomac’s doorstep with his B.A. in English in hand to begin what has become quite an adventure. As a Sales and Marketing Administrator, he helped to bring in business for what was then a fledgling contract manufacturing group at Potomac. Within a year, it became clear that this venture was growing faster than anyone had anticipated. To further contribute, Mike began building a Quality System. Soon he, through the Maryland ISO Consortium, became a certified Lead Assessor. Taking this knowledge and experience, he developed and implemented Potomac’s ISO Quality Management System and led them to successful ISO 9001:2000 certification in January of 2004. To things a step further, Mike then led Potomac to ISO 13485:2003 certification a few short years later. Understanding all along that to truly contribute to complete quality he had to completely understand all of the technology and what went into it, Mike studied and became very proficient with Potomac’s laser technologies. Eventually, he reached the point where he was assembling some of the production laser systems, creating programs, developing customer applications in R&D and production, and training all of the technicians. So, in the natural progression of things, Mike moved into the role of Director of Operations for Potomac. His next challenge? Well, as Potomac begins to head in this exciting, new direction, he will be tasked with updating and upgrading Potomac’s facility to make it a leading edge micro manufacturing facility. When not assaulting innocent polymers with laser beams, Mike hangs out with his family, engages in a variety of sports, enjoys nice micro-brews, and, every now and then, escapes to Canada to get away from it all.

Read more

Ms. Ford is a fifteen year veteran of the Company and has been instrumental in the success of Potomac. In addition to serving as the Company’s Controller, she is responsible for human resources and administration. She acts in the capacity of expeditor of Potomac’s three (3) largest client assignments. Prior to joining Potomac in 1996 she worked for three years at the National Association of Manufacturers assisting the President of Small Manufacturers Forum, an organization which serves the needs of 40 Small Manufacturing Board members. She is currently completing her degree in Accounting from the University of Maryland.

Read more

Sidney is Potomac’s Vice President of Sales and previously worked at Potomac from 1996 to 2006. Initially working as Sales Engineer and then Director of Business Development, Sidney later switched sides to be the Technical Lead for the Microfabrication Center handling customer’s samples and setting up laser systems and training technicians for production operations. He has over 30 years of experience in the laser field covering a wide range of lasers both in the sales/marketing and technical areas with companies such as the DOE facilities at Oak Ridge, TN, Coherent, Schwartz Electro-Optics, L-3 ALST and others. His passion for laser micromachining and microfabrication along with this wide range of experience is brought to every interaction with Potomac’s customers. Sidney holds a BS degree in physics from Tenn. Tech Univ., a MS degree in physics from Univ. of Tenn., Knoxville, and one US patent for marking gem stones with lasers.

Read more