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Carl Zeiss AG

ZEISS, formerly known as Carl Zeiss AG, is a German manufacturer of optical systems and opto­electronics, founded in 1846 in Jena (Germany) by optician Carl Zeiss. It was the first company to produce high-quality microscopes at a large scale. Today, ZEISS is active in four (equally large) business segments in nearly 50 countries, has 30 production sites and approx. 25 development sites worldwide, and is headquartered in Oberkochen. All ZEISS subsidaries fall under the holding Carl Zeiss AG, which itself is owned by the Carl Zeiss Foundation (Carl-Zeiss-Stiftung) [1].

During World War II (WWII), Zeiss made optical systems for the German war machine. After the war, most of the production site in Jena fell into Russian hands and was relocated to the Soviet Union to form the Arsenal factory in Kiev (Ukraine). Which help from the Americans, part of the old company in Jena was relocated to Oberkochen in West-Germany, where it remains to this day.

During the Cold War (1947-1991), the production sites in Jena and Dresden were located in East-Germany (DDR) and were nationalised as Kombinat VEB Zeiss Jena — also known as Kombinat CZJ. Apart from lenses for consumer cameras like Contax and Pentacon, the company also produced optical and optoelectronic equipment for the repressive security service of the DDR – the Stasi – some of which is featured on this website. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the sub­sequent reunification of East and West Germany, the two ZEISS companies were reunified in 1990.

ZEISS products on this website
2.8/35 P-Flektogon lens (M36)
2.8/50 Biotar lens (M36)
3.5/75 Tessar lens (M36)
3.5/135 Sonnar lens (M36)
High-end pinhole lens kit SO-3.5.1
High-end pinhole lens kit SO-3.5.2 for use with video cameras
Infrared transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) JO-4 developed in the DDR
Passive infrared communication device
Infrared transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) JO-4.02 (Palme) developed in the DDR
Infra-red transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) JO-4.03 developed in the DDR
Infrared transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) JO-4.05 (Palme) suitable for transmitting video
Infrared transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) JO-4.06 (Palme) suitable for receiving video
Modular infrared transceiver (Lichtsprechgerät) developed in the DDR
ZEISS is known under the following (former) names:

  • Carl Zeiss
  • Carl Zeiss AG
  • Carl Zeiss Jena
  • Zeiss Jena GmbH
  • Jenoptik Carl Zeiss Jena GmbH
  • Jenoptik GmbH (split-off)
  • Zeiss Ikon Kamerawerke (Dresden)
  • Zeiss Group
  • Carl-Zeiss-Stiftung
  • Opton Optische Werke Oberkochen GmbH (1946)
  • Zeiss-Opton Optische Werke Oberkochen GmbH (1947)
Below is a non-exhaustive list of ZEISS subsidaries:

  • Hensolt AG (1928-2006)
  • Carl Zeiss Sports Optics GmbH
  • Carl Zeiss Vision
  • Schott AG
Business segments
  • Industrial Quality and Research
  • Medical Technology
  • Consumer Markets
  • Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology
  1. Wikipedia, Carl Zeiss AG
    Visited 22 November 2021.

  2. Zeiss, ZEISS History
    Visited 22 November 2021.
Further information
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© Crypto Museum. Created: Sunday 28 November 2021. Last changed: Friday, 17 December 2021 - 09:30 CET.
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