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8 September 2004 Free-space optical interconnect using an FLC SLM for active beam steering and wave front correction
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Free-space optical interconnects have a wide range of potential applications in the field of telecommunications, computing, and data storage. Of particular interest is their use at the printed circuit board-to-printed circuit board level to either augment or replace a conventional electronic backplane. Although it is possible to design a free-space interconnect capable of operating at data rates equal to, or greater than conventional electronic backplanes, acceptance of free-space technology has been slow due to the perceived difficulties in aligning the system, and in maintaining alignment during the operational cycle of a product. In this paper we describe the implementation of a free space optical interconnect that uses a programmable diffractive element for active beam steering in order to maintain the link between the two printed circuit boards. Moreover, by using a modal wave front sensor, the diffractive element corrects for static aberrations. These static aberrations, such as field curvature and coma, are due to intrinsic imperfections in the optical system related to the lenses used. In addition, aberrations introduced by misalignments can also be compensated for. The diffractive structure is displayed on a ferroelectric liquid crystal spatial light modulator. Simulations and theoretical discussions of the performance of the system are shown and analysed.
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Diego Gil Leyva, Brian Robertson, Charley J. Henderson, Timothy D. Wilkinson, Dominic C. O'Brien, and Grahame Faulkner "Free-space optical interconnect using an FLC SLM for active beam steering and wave front correction", Proc. SPIE 5453, Micro-Optics, VCSELs, and Photonic Interconnects, (8 September 2004);

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