Laser Marking the Key to the City

First Recipient of Washington D.C.'s newest Key:  Republic of South Africa President, Thabo Mbeki
First Recipient of Washington D.C.’s newest Key: Republic of South Africa President, Thabo Mbeki

A consortium of technology companies has come together to produce a new take on Washington D.C.’S “Key to the City”. The key, a symbolic token of welcome to its recipients, has been redesigned to reflect bold new advances in technology.

Renowned sculptor John Dreyfuss ( assembled a team of experts to produce his innovative design. Precision CAD/CAM Systems of hunt Valley, MD utilized cutting-edge software to generate a 3D model of the new City Key. Art Research Enterprises, of York, PA, used this model to forge the final results in steel.


Key to the City

The heavy, uniquely created key was then delivered to Lenox Laser, of Glen Arm, MD for some important finishing touches. Precision, deep laser engraving was required to exhibit sharp, contrasting text to exacting tolerances. Lenox Laser used high power laser marking technology to mark the unique geometric surface of the key.

South African President, Mr. Thabo Mbeki, is reported to be the first visitor formally welcomed with the gift of the city’s new key.

Reading “Justicia Omnibus” on one side and declaring “Opportunity For All” on the reverse, the revised key symbolized the spirit and true heart of America’s great capital city. Lenox Laser is privileged to have taken part in this exciting, historical project.

NASA Kepler Mission

This special purpose space mission that has been proposed to NASA Headquarter’s Discovery Program as a practical method for detecting Extrasolar Terrestrial Planets, that is, rocky and Earth-size. Lenox Laser fabricated a custom Starfield Plate for the Kepler Mission.

Quote from NASA’s Kepler Mission Web Site

“The star plate has a large number of holes of various sizes (used to perform time-variant relative photometry) and they are placed in many locations across the field-of-view to support the suite of tests described earlier. The plate is made of 50-micron thick stainless steel and opaque (transparency of less than one part in a million). The hole pattern was drilled with a laser beam by Lenox Laser, with some holes as small as 3 microns diameter (for the mv=19 stars).

There are 84 holes for the 9<14 target stars in the uncrowded region of the plate. These are used to isolate the effects of faint background stars, bright stars, smearing, etc. Some of these have very nearby stars as faint as mv=19 to demonstrate that stars five magnitudes fainter than the target star are not a problem even when spacecraft jitter is simulated. Bias-Smear Graphic of 84 Star plate Array There is a crowded portion of the plate with 1540 stars having the same star field density to mv=19 as the actual Cygnus region to be viewed by the Kepler Mission. This region was used to demonstrate the ability to perform the high-precision relative photometry even in crowded fields."

Dr. David Koch – Deputy Principal Investigator, Kepler Mission
Kepler Website – NASA

e-blox and Coppin State

e-blox technology can empower Baltimore’s Inner City. Suddenly, everyone can be an engineer. Lenox Laser is pioneering “Intuitive Tools” as a bridge to new millennium learning. e-Imaginative Blox help students help themselves. Designing and constructing real-life applications using simple math, high-tech tools and lot of fun! Join us as we challenge tomorrow’s horizons today…

Joe d’Entremont, President of Lenox Laser envisions a collective effort brining together students from Baltimore’s colleges, universities and high schools. They will participate in a project of discovery that could set the course for the future. Theirs, yours and ours!

Lenox Laser is now a partner with Coppin State University, a local teacher college, to develop and promote Science fair competition all over the area starting with Douglas and a few others.

Also we are seeking a private location for a museum for furthering education and competitions.

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