Hybrid Fabrication of Large, Low-Scatter Diffractive Optics

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 992486
Amount: $600,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2001
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Diffraction Ltd.
Route 100, Waitsfield, VT, 05673
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 William Parker
 Director of Research
 () -
 bparker@diffractionltd.com
Business Contact
 Julie Parker
Title: President
Phone: (802) 496-6642
Email: jwalk@diffractionltd.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
We propose a new approach to the fabrication of large, low scatter diffractive optics using a hybrid of existing ¿off-the-shelf¿ methods. Although several techniques are used to make diffractive optics, no single method is currently capable of the large clear aperture size, wavefront accuracy and surface quality that our proposed hybrid method offers. Using existing tools, an accurate DOE pattern is transferred to the final substrate through three proprietary steps, successively removing surface roughness and edge errors with each step. Our approach will allow the fabrication of large (greater than 1 meter), lightweight, low cost diffractive optics on both planar and curved surfaces for NASA applications. The resulting surface smoothness and flatness should be as good or better than is found on refractive optics made by traditional polishing processes, with a wavefront perfection only found with diffractive optics. These devices can fulfill advanced imaging and light gathering missions never before attempted using off-the-shelf fabrication methods, and materials that cannot be diamond turned. The proposed method can also be used in the fabrication of plane and powered gratings and multilevel sub-wavelength structures.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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