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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Michael Duncan
  • Vol. 14, Iss. 14 — Jul. 10, 2006
  • pp: 6557–6563

Agile wide-angle beam steering with electrowetting microprisms

Neil R. Smith, Don C. Abeysinghe, Joseph W. Haus, and Jason Heikenfeld  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 14, pp. 6557-6563 (2006)

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A novel basis for beam steering with electrowetting microprisms (EMPs) is reported. EMPs utilize electrowetting modulation of liquid contact angle in order to mimic the refractive behavior for various classical prism geometries. Continuous beam steering through an angle of 14° (±7°) has been demonstrated with a liquid index of n=1.359. Experimental results are well-matched to theoretical behavior up to the point of electrowetting contact-angle saturation. Projections show that use of higher index liquids (n~1.6) will result in steering through ~30° (±15°). Fundamental factors defining achievable deflection range, and issues for Ladar use, are reviewed. This approach is capable of good switching speed (~ms), polarization independent operation, modulation of beam field-of-view (lensing), and high steering efficiency that is independent of deflection angle.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1290) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric optics
(010.3310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Laser beam transmission
(010.3640) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Lidar
(230.2090) Optical devices : Electro-optical devices
(230.5480) Optical devices : Prisms

ToC Category:
Optical Devices

Original Manuscript: April 24, 2006
Revised Manuscript: June 21, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: June 23, 2006
Published: July 10, 2006

Neil R. Smith, Don C. Abeysinghe, Joseph W. Haus, and Jason Heikenfeld, "Agile wide-angle beam steering with electrowetting microprisms," Opt. Express 14, 6557-6563 (2006)

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