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Proceedings Paper

Proof-of-concept demonstration of a miniaturized multi-resolution refocusing imaging system using an electrically tunable lens
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Paper Abstract

Refocusing multi-channel imaging systems are nowadays commercially available only in bulky and expensive designs. Compact wafer-level multi-channel imaging systems have until now only been published without refocusing mechanisms, since classical refocusing concepts could not be integrated in a miniaturized configuration. This lack of refocusing capabilities limits the depth-of-field of these imaging designs and therefore their application in practical systems. We designed and characterized a wafer-level two-channel multi-resolution refocusing imaging system, based on an electrically tunable liquid lens and a design that can be realized with wafer-level mass-manufacturing techniques. One wide field-of-view channel (2x40°) gives a general image of the surroundings with a lower angular resolution (0.078°), whereas the high angular resolution channel (0.0098°) provides a detailed image of a small region of interest with a much narrower field-of-view (2x7.57°). The latter high resolution imaging channel contains the tunable lens and therefore the refocusing capability. The performances of this high resolution imaging channel were experimentally characterized in a proof-of-concept demonstrator. The experimental and simulated depth-of-field and resolving power correspond well. Moreover, we are able to obtain a depth-of-field from 0.25m until infinity, which is a significant improvement of the current state-of-the-art static multi-channel imaging systems, which show a depth-of-field from 9m until infinity. Both the high resolution and wide field-of-view imaging channels show a diffraction-limited image quality. The designed wafer-level two-channel imaging system can form the basis of an advanced three-dimensional stacked image sensor, where different image processing algorithms can be simultaneously applied to the different images on the image sensor.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 September 2014
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 9192, Current Developments in Lens Design and Optical Engineering XV, 91920G (25 September 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2061296
Show Author Affiliations
L. Smeesters, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
G. Y. Belay, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
H. Ottevaere, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
Y. Meuret, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
Michael Vervaeke, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
J. Van Erps, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)
H. Thienpont, Vrije Univ. Brussel (Belgium)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9192:
Current Developments in Lens Design and Optical Engineering XV
R. Barry Johnson; Virendra N. Mahajan; Simon Thibault, Editor(s)

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