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1 March 1994 Convolving optically addressed VLSI liquid crystal SLM
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We designed, fabricated, and tested an optically addressed spatial light modulator (SLM) that performs a 3 X 3 kernel image convolution using ferroelectric liquid crystal on VLSI technology. The chip contains a 16 X 16 array of current-mirror-based convolvers with a fixed kernel for finding edges. The pixels are located on 75 micron centers, and the modulators are 20 microns on a side. The array successfully enhanced edges in illumination patterns. We developed a high-level simulation tool (CON) for analyzing the performance of convolving SLM designs. CON has a graphical interface and simulates SLM functions using SPICE-like device models. The user specifies the pixel function along with the device parameters and nonuniformities. We discovered through analysis, simulation and experiment that the operation of current-mirror-based convolver pixels is degraded at low light levels by the variation of transistor threshold voltages inherent to CMOS chips. To function acceptable, the test SLM required the input image to have an minimum irradiance of 10 (mu) W/cm2. The minimum required irradiance can be further reduced by adding a photodarlington near the photodetector or by increasing the size of the transistors used to calculate the convolution.
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David A. Jared and Charles W. Stirk "Convolving optically addressed VLSI liquid crystal SLM", Proc. SPIE 2237, Optical Pattern Recognition V, (1 March 1994);

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