Fringing fields in a liquid crystal spatial light modulator for beam steering
2004 (English)In: Journal of Modern Optics, ISSN 0950-0340, Vol. 51, no 8, 1233-1247 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Phase modulating spatial light modulators (SLMs) can be used to alter the shape of a laser wavefront to achieve a deflection or change in the shape of a laser beam. This paper reports the results of characterization, simulation and optimization of a one-dimensional liquid crystal (LC) SLM. The device has a large ratio between LC layer thickness and pixel pitch that results in a fringing field between pixels. In effect, the applied phase patterns will be low-pass filtered and the loss of high frequency components limits, for instance, the usable steering range. A method is presented where intensity measurements in the far field are used to determine how the phase modulation at the SLM is distorted. The inhomogeneous optical anisotropy of the device was determined by modelling the liquid crystal director distribution within the electrode-pixel structure. Finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) simulations were used to calculate the light propagation through the LC. The simulated phase distortion was compared with the experimental results. A voltage compensation scheme to improve the diffraction efficiency was developed utilizing the measured and simulated results. It is demonstrated that a modification of the voltage patterns can give a better realization of high frequency components in the phase distribution and an increase in maximum steering angle by a factor two.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2004. Vol. 51, no 8, 1233-1247 p.
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-45740DOI: 10.1080/09500340410001648465OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-45740DiVA: diva2:266636