Membrane deformable mirror devices consist of a single large membrane that is suspended above an array of actuating electrodes. A transparent electrode is incorporated into the membrane mirror device in the optical path in an effort to provide significantly greater control of the membrane, and hence improved performance in an adaptive optics system. The devices presented here were fabricated from 1 mm thickness SOI; devices were bonded to electrode arrays with 1024 electrodes, packaged in ceramic pin grid arrays and driven by off chip D/A electronics. The transparent electrodes consist of glass that is ITO coated for electrical conductivity and visible light transmission. An electrode is inserted into a recessed cavity of each membrane chip, and is positioned 70 mm above the membrane. With 2x2 binned electrodes, the device demonstrates 10 mm deflection toward the electrode array at 40 V. Large deflection at low voltage is obtained because of the low intrinsic stress of the silicon membrane. These data also demonstrate modest deflection toward the transparent electrode, which may be improved with better alignment of the transparent electrode with the underlying membrane and electrode array in future devices.
Low stress membrane mirrors will allow improved wave front correction in vision science and astronomical adaptive optics systems. We have fabricated low stress membrane mirrors from single crystal silicon, and flip chip bonded membranes to electrode arrays. These devices operate at lower voltage and have greater stroke than existing membrane mirror devices; they have 256 control electrodes, and are driven by off chip electronics. Devices have a single electrode plane and are pre-biased to allow full wave front correction. We have demonstrated these devices in an adaptive optics system consisting of a coherent source, and a Shack-Hartmann wave front sensor. We compare the experimental performance of the devices to computer simulations and theoretical calculations.
As telecom networks increase in complexity there is a need for systems capable of manage numerous optical signals. Many of the channel-manipulation functions can be done more effectively in the optical domain. MEMS devices are especially well suited for this functions since they can offer large number of degrees of freedom in a limited space, thus providing high levels of optical integration.
We have designed, fabricated and tested optical MEMS devices at the core of Optical Cross Connects, WDM spectrum equalizers and Optical Add-Drop multiplexors based on different fabrication technologies such as polySi surface micromachining, single crystal SOI and combination of both. We show specific examples of these devices, discussing design trade-offs, fabrication requirements and optical performance in each case.
We are developing membrane mirrors for use in adaptive optics, particularly in astronomy and vision science. We have micro-fabricated membrane mirrors from single crystal silicon using wet chemical etching and reactive ion etching. Membrane size, tension and operating voltage were selected to allow greater deformation of the mirror surface at low operating voltage than previous membrane mirror designs. Mirror devices consist of independently fabricated membrane and electrode array chips that are flip chip bonded together. We have fabricated electrode arrays with 256 and 1024 electrodes, and active diameters ranging from 6-10 mm (comparable to the size of the human pupil). Membrane-electrode hybrids are mounted to ceramic packages, wire bonded, and driven by off chip, D/A electronics. These devices are milestones in the development of an electret membrane mirror.
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