Volume-growth solgel glass acting as self-developing material is used for three-dimensional (3D) fabrication of micro-optical elements. The solgel glass is exposed to a focused laser beam (λ=325 nm) , and surface corrugation is created as a result of surface expansion in the exposed area. The profile depth is related to the laser beam intensity, which is controlled by an acousto-optic modulator, which makes it possible to fabricate 3D structures in the material. Preliminary results show that the controllable volume-growth effect will be of considerable use for production of 3D micro-optical elements with excellent surface smoothness in solgel materials.
© 2003 Optical Society of America
(050.1970) Diffraction and gratings : Diffractive optics
(160.4670) Materials : Optical materials
(160.6060) Materials : Solgel
(220.4000) Optical design and fabrication : Microstructure fabrication
Weixing Yu and X.-C. Yuan, "Volume growth initiated by point-to-point ultraviolet-laser direct writing in hybrid solgel glass for three-dimensional microfabrication," Opt. Lett. 28, 1573-1575 (2003)