Micro optics, space variant, transmission filters, spectral filters, spatial filters, guided mode resonance, laser, broad area, brightness, enhancement


A wide range of applications currently utilize conventional optical elements to individually transform the phase, polarization, and spectral transmission/reflection of the incident radiation to realize the desired system level function. The material properties and the feasibility of fabrication primarily impact the device and system functionality that can be realized. With the advancement in micro/nano patterning, growth, deposition and etching technology, devices with novel and multiplexed optical functionalities have become feasible. As a result, it has become possible to engineer the device response in the near and far field by controlling the phase, polarization or spectral response at the micro scale. One of the methods that have been explored to realize unique optical functionalities is by varying the structural properties of the device as a function of spatial location at the sub-micron scale across the device aperture. Spatially varying the structural parameters of these devices is analogous to local modifications of the material properties. In this dissertation, the optical response of interference transmission filters, guided mode resonance reflection filters, and diffraction gratings operated in Littrow condition with strategically introduced spatial variation have been investigated. Spatial variations in optical interference filters were used to demonstrate wavelength tunable spatial filters. The effect was realized by integrating diffractive and continuous phase functions on the defect layer of a one-dimensional photonic crystal structure. Guided mode resonance filters are free space optical filters that provide narrow spectral reflection by combining grating and waveguide dispersion effects. Frequency dependent spatial reflection profiles were achieved by spatially varying the grating fill fraction in designed contours. Diffraction gratings with space variant fill fractions operating in Littrow condition were used to provide graded feedback profiles to improve the beam quality and spatial brightness of broad area diode lasers. The fabrication of space variant structures is challenging and has been accomplished primarily by techniques such as ruling, electron beam writing or complex deposition methods. In order to vary the desired structural parameter in a designed manner, a novel technique for the fabrication of space variant structures using projection lithography with a fidelity that rivals any of the current technologies was also developed as a part of this work. The devices exhibit wavelength dependent beam shaping properties in addition to spatial and spectral filtering and have potential applications in advanced imaging systems, graded reflectivity laser mirrors, and engineered illumination. The design, modeling, microfabrication and experimental characterization of space variant micro optical elements with novel optical functionalities are presented.


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Graduation Date



LiKamWa, Patrick


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Optics and Photonics


Optics and Photonics

Degree Program









Release Date

February 2010

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)