According to the foundation's objective in the early years the activities were concentrated on medical applications of lasers, supplemented by (laser) optical diagnostic techniques. Later on laser metrology and dental technology were added. Meanwhile, ILM has developed into an Institute of applied photonics and optics The core business is health research with the focus on medicine and dentistry, but this is completed by the topics "Quality control in industrial production" with non contact techniques for the measurement of 3D shape, roughness and material properties. Additionally "Analytics" has been extended. For analytical purpose sensors and imaging systems has been developped, to measure ingredients or physical properties of particles without any calibration. These areas are choosen so that existing skills can be used widely diverse.