While optical spectroscopy has shown great promise in a multitude of applications, the cost, size, and fragility of spectrometer instruments have hindered widespread application of the technology. :tvfEMS microspectrometers offer great hope for low-cost, lightweight, and robust spectrometers, paving the way for pervasive use in many fields. In this invited paper, we report on nearly 15 years of development on MEMS spectrometers in our research group, beginning with devices designed for the shortwave infrared (SWIR) and midwave infrared (MWIR), and moving on to our most recent work towards MEMS spectrometers in the visible and near infrared (NIR) as well as the thermal long-wave infrared (LWIR) bands.
A miniature Fabry-Perot etalon was designed and fabricated to provide spectral filtering capability at the resonance
wavelength of 10 μm. A high transmission peak of 85% and a relatively broad bandwidth of 500 nm are expected based
on optical modeling. Optimal deposition conditions for process durable thin film materials were developed and optical
constants of these materials were characterized. Fabrication of devices was accomplished using standard surface
micromachining technique. Released mirrors exhibited a deflection of 400 nm over a length of 150 μm.