The government subsidizes American small businesses to create WDM (and four zillion more technologies). The Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) supplies a little seed capital for infant development and then a little more when private capital joins in. BMDO's cumulative investment of $DOL300M in Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) since 1985 has seeded some notable successes. BMDO's SBIR, which has helped a fourth of this symposium's speakers, attracts a dollar of private capital for every SBIR dollar. Small US firms raised $DOL200 million from public sale of common stock, doubled in employment, and are attracting a growing pool of private capital to match and expand BMDO's subsidy.
Carl W. Nelson, Carl W. Nelson,
"Wavelength division mini money: small subsidy for small business", Proc. SPIE 2690, Wavelength Division Multiplexing Components, (1 May 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.238914; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.238914