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Journal of Micro/Nanolithography, MEMS, and MOEMS

Micromilled optical elements for edge-lit illumination panels
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Paper Abstract

Edge-lit light guide panels (LGPs) with micropatterned surfaces represent a new technology for developing small- and medium-sized illumination sources for application such as automotive, residential lighting, and advertising displays. The shape, density, and spatial distribution of the micro-optical structures (MOSs) imprinted on the transparent LGP must be selected to achieve high brightness and uniform luminance over the active surface. We examine how round-tip cylindrical MOSs fabricated by precision micromilling can be used to create patterned surfaces on low-cost transparent polymethyl-methacrylate substrates for high-intensity illumination applications. The impact of varying the number, pitch, spatial distribution, and depth of the optical microstructures on lighting performance is initially investigated using LightTools™ simulation software. To illustrate the microfabrication process, several 100×100×6 mm 3 LGP prototypes are constructed and tested. The prototypes include an “optimized” array of MOSs that exhibit near-uniform illumination (approximately 89%) across its active light-emitting surface. Although the average illumination was 7.3% less than the value predicted from numerical simulation, it demonstrates how LGPs can be created using micromilling operations. Customized MOS arrays with a bright rectangular pattern near the center of the panel and a sequence of MOSs that illuminate a predefined logo are also presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 April 2013
PDF: 12 pages
J. Micro/Nanolith. MEMS MOEMS 12(2) 023002 doi: 10.1117/1.JMM.12.2.023002
Published in: Journal of Micro/Nanolithography, MEMS, and MOEMS Volume 12, Issue 2
Show Author Affiliations
Rahima Afrose Ronny, The Univ. of Western Ontario (Canada)
George K. Knopf, The Univ. of Western Ontario (Canada)
Evgueni V. Bordatchev, National Research Council Canada (Canada)
Suwas Nikumb, National Research Council Canada (Canada)

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