26 October 2016 Ink-jet printed fluorescent materials as light sources for planar optical waveguides on polymer foils
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Polymer-based optical sensor networks on foils (planar optronic systems) are a promising research field, but it can be challenging to supply them with light. We present a solvent-free, ink-jet printable material system with optically active substances to create planar light sources for these networks. The ink is based on a UV-curable monomer, the fluorescent agents are Eu(DBM)3Phen or 9,10-diphenylantracene, which fluoresce at 612 or 430 nm, respectively. We demonstrate the application as light source by printing a small area of fluorescent material on an optical waveguide fabricated by flexographic printing on PMMA foil, resulting in a simple polymer-optical device fabricated entirely by additive deposition techniques. When excited by a 405-nm laser of 10 mW, the emitted light couples into the waveguide and appears at the end of the waveguide. In comparison to conventional light sources, the intensity is weak but could be detected with a photodiode power sensor. In return, the concept has the advantage of being completely independent of any electrical elements or external cable connections.
© 2016 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)
Patrick Bollgruen, Patrick Bollgruen, Uwe Gleissner, Uwe Gleissner, Tim Wolfer, Tim Wolfer, Christof Megnin, Christof Megnin, Dario Mager, Dario Mager, Ludger Overmeyer, Ludger Overmeyer, Jan G. Korvink, Jan G. Korvink, Thomas Hanemann, Thomas Hanemann, } "Ink-jet printed fluorescent materials as light sources for planar optical waveguides on polymer foils," Optical Engineering 55(10), 107107 (26 October 2016). https://doi.org/10.1117/1.OE.55.10.107107 . Submission:

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