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12 September 2007 Fly's eye condenser based on chirped microlens arrays
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Lens array arrangements are commonly used for the beam shaping of almost arbitrary input intensity distributions into a top-hat. The setup usually consists of a Fourier lens and two identical regular microlens arrays - often referred to as tandem lens array - where the second one is placed in the focal plane of the first microlenses. Due to the periodic structure of regular arrays the output intensity distribution is modulated by equidistant sharp intensity peaks which are disturbing the homogeneity. The equidistantly located intensity peaks can be suppressed when using a chirped and therefore non-periodic microlens array. A far field speckle pattern with more densely and irregularly located intensity peaks results leading to an improved homogeneity of the intensity distribution. In contrast to stochastic arrays, chirped arrays consist of individually shaped lenses defined by a parametric description of the cells optical function which can be derived completely from analytical functions. This gives the opportunity to build up tandem array setups enabling to achieve far field intensity distribution with an envelope of a top-hat. We propose a new concept for fly's eye condensers incorporating a chirped tandem microlens array for the generation of a top-hat far field intensity distribution with improved homogenization under coherent illumination. The setup is compliant to reflow of photoresist as fabrication technique since plane substrates accommodating the arrays are used. Considerations for the design of the chirped microlens arrays, design rules, wave optical simulations and measurements of the far field intensity distributions are presented.
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Frank C. Wippermann, Uwe-D. Zeitner, Peter Dannberg, Andreas Bräuer, and Stefan Sinzinger "Fly's eye condenser based on chirped microlens arrays", Proc. SPIE 6663, Laser Beam Shaping VIII, 666309 (12 September 2007);

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