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Appl Opt. 2008 Jun 20;47(18):3246-53.

Design of retrodiffraction gratings for polarization-insensitive and polarization-sensitive characteristics by using the Taguchi method.

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  • 1Department of Nanomechanics, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan.


We present the design of retrodiffraction gratings that utilize total internal reflection (TIR) in a lamellar configuration to achieve high performance for both TE and TM polarized light and polarization-sensitive performance for gratings behaving as polarizer filters; the design was based on rigorous coupled wave analysis (RCWA) and the Taguchi method. The components can thus be fabricated from a single dielectric material and do not have to be coated with a metallic or dielectric film layer to enhance the reflectance. The effects of the structural and optical parameters of lamellar gratings were investigated, and the TIR gratings in a lamellar configuration were structurally and optically optimized in terms of the signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) and a statistical analysis of variance (ANOVA) of the refractive index, grating period, filling factor, and grating depth as control factors and the estimated efficiency by RCWA as a noise factor. For more accurate robustness, a two-step optimization process was used for each purpose. For TIR gratings designed to perform similarly for TE and TM incident polarization, the -1st-order efficiencies were estimated to be up to 92.0% and 88.5% for TE and TM polarization, respectively. Also, for the TIR gratings designed to achieve polarization-sensitive performance when behaving as a polarizer filters, the -1st-order diffraction efficiencies for TE and TM polarization were estimated to be up to 95.5% and 2.7%, respectively. From these analysis results, it was confirmed that the Taguchi method shows feasibility for an optimization approach to a technique for designing optical devices.

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