Thin-film optical coating processes for ABL/SBL platforms
Agency / Branch:
DOD / MDA
The proposed program has been constructed to develop an anisotropic multilayer coating technology that offers to revolutionize a broad range of optical components; such components extending to normal-incidence polarizers and phase shifters, variable laseroutput couplers, and antireflection coatings for birefringent substrates. When developed, this technology can offer a reduction in the number of components required for laser and optical systems, thereby improving manufacturability and reducing size andcost. The applicability of anisotropic technology to the Airborne Laser (ABL) is self-evident. Anisotropic coatings for the ABL Track Illuminator Laser, for example, will eliminate two elements from the laser beampath while, simultaneously, effecting ahighly beneficial reduction in beampath length. Applied by e-beam bideposition, coatings explored to date involve refractory oxides and silicon-on-silicon. Oxide coatings provide ruggedness together with low absorption and high laser damage threshold.Meanwhile, silicon-on-silicon coatings form a natural bridge between the fields of photonics and semiconductor electronics. Furthermore, this technology also blends with the exciting new field of nanophotonics and devices. Successful development ofanisotropic dielectric coatings, particularly those employing silicon-on-silicon, will enable a host of novel optical devices and will improve the performance of numerous devices that now employ conventional coatings. As such, we expect such coatings toform the basis of an entirely new segment of the optical fabrication industry. Additionally, we believe that this technology will enable us to produce nanometer-scale structures; those structures being applicable in the field of nanophotonics.
Small Business Information at Submission:
10070 Carroll Canyon Road San Diego, CA 92131
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