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Proceedings Paper

Optics and MEMS: a new opportunity for innovation
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Paper Abstract

Optics has been a technology for a long time. Often, just when it looked like the technology was beginning to diminish in impact, a new technology related to optics was born and completely rejuvenated the field. This caused significant innovation in relatively short periods of time. For example, the development of the laser in the early 1960s gave rise to laser printers, CD disk drives, optical recording, fiber optic communication etc. and has produced an enormous increase in practical devices as well as economic value. We are now faced with another opportunity. This opportunity is the ability to fabricate small optical "benches" or structures using the same material that has enabled the computer revolution, viz. silicon. While this field is relatively new, what might we expect from this new capability? The opportunity for displays, sensors, communication, etc. are beginning to open up and present new business and innovation possibilities. Optics has always benefited from system enabling technologies and Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Systems is a major new development. In this paper I will look at where we might go with Optics and MEMS or MOEMS. Examples of display concepts, etc. will be discussed that illustrate the great potential of these combined capabilities in just one area. It is likely that we will not be limited by the technology but by our imagination in its use.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 January 2003
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 4985, MOEMS Display and Imaging Systems, (20 January 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.477814
Show Author Affiliations
Gary K. Starkweather, Microsoft Corp. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4985:
MOEMS Display and Imaging Systems
Hakan Urey, Editor(s)

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