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Meet Mike Hines

Principal of Optical Strategies, LLC

I’m Mike and if you’re here you probably want to learn a bit more about me and what I’m up to with Optical Strategies, LLC. So, thanks for visiting and here goes.

I’m a business and economics guy with a long habit of curiosity about technology, specifically fiber optics in all its many forms and capabilities. I’ve also had the good fortune of being surrounded by some of the brightest, most passionate technologists in the world for over thirty years -  much of their passion has rubbed off on me.

Yes, fiber optics is that hair-thin glass that enables transfer of vast amounts of data, very far and very fast. What really gets me going are the other, less obvious things that optical fiber technologies do for us.

I have a personal and keen interest to help advance the intersection of fiber optic sensing with renewable energy technologies - in offshore wind energy for example - I’m interested in how fiber optic sensing can improve performance, reliability and resiliency - and hasten adoption of carbon-free electricity generation.

Did You Know That...

  • Optical fibers are used in industrial and medical applications to deliver energy, sense things and transfer images.

  • Optical fibers, the type used for communications, can be converted to extreme-length detectors of strain, temperature and vibration, monitoring their surroundings every few meters for tens and hundreds of kilometers.

  • Imagine what can be accomplished by turning a run-of-the-mill fiber optic cable into a dense array of sensors that can feel and hear along their entire length - simply by connecting one fiber within the cable to a very capable opto-electronic box - this is done routinely through Distributed Fiber Optic Sensing (DFOS) technologies.

  • If you really need extreme sensitivity, specialty optical fibers and cable technologies exist that can up the game radically.

  • Optical fibers, while glass material, are incredibly flexible and mechanically rugged – opening unforeseen opportunities in the harsh conditions of aerospace, mining, in-well, manufacturing, energy generation and transmission, pipeline monitoring and more.


These markets, applications, and technologies are where I learned and are just a few examples of non-traditional uses for fiber optics. Today there are many firms worldwide working hard to establish them in commerce. That’s where I come in and where Optical Strategies, LLC got it’s start.

So, what is Optical Strategies, LLC?

Building on decades in technology, product and market development, international selling, and years of leadership and advocacy through well-known associations like the Fiber Optic Sensing Association (FOSA), Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), and the SEAFOM Fiber Optic Monitoring Group, I formed Optical Strategies, LLC to provide business guidance and advice for firms interested in growing markets with their advanced technologies. Through Optical Strategies, LLC I provide business advice, insights, deep, niche-focused market research, identification of blind spots and pragmatic approaches to entering markets and growing your company.


If this interests you, drop a line via the contact page. We can have an initial discussion to see if a good match exists between your needs and Optical Strategies’ services.


Thank you for your interest.

Mission and Values

I wish to be known as the premier provider of business development and strategic planning advice to firms in the distributed fiber optic sensing and specialty photonics markets, worldwide. This desire comes from the belief that most firms fail for want of thorough knowledge of the markets they serve, and absence of time and process to unearth it - not for lack of wisdom, creativity, or ambition.

To achieve this I draw from three traits: core experience in niche markets, personal integrity and innate curiosity. The more I learn, the more I can help, and the more I realize how much there is to know.

I maintain confidentiality, honesty, respect, responsiveness, and flexibility.


I listen intently; shun formulaic answers; adjust to needs; learn from all sources; practice discretion and I’m disciplined in serving prized clients with value.

To fulfill this I seek a balance between work, family, friends, health, leisure, development, and opportunity.


I pursue clients actively to serve only those who need and want my help; I charge enough to maintain competencies without tarnishing my integrity and I am grateful for any enjoyment that stems from supporting, advising and witnessing clients as they flourish.

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