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Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2011;2011:6134-7. doi: 10.1109/IEMBS.2011.6091515.

23 kHz MEMS based swept source for optical coherence tomography imaging.

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  • 1Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ryerson University, ON M5B 2K3, Canada.


The transition from benchtop to clinical system often requires the medical technology to be robust, portable and accurate. This poses a challenge to current swept source optical coherence tomography imaging systems, as the bulk of the systems footprint is due to laser components. With the recent advancement of micromachining technology, we demonstrate the characterization of a microelectromechanical system (MEMS) swept source laser for optical coherence tomography imaging (OCT). This laser utilizes a 2 degree of freedom MEMS scanning mirror and a diffraction grating, which are arranged in a Littrow configuration. This resulted in a swept source laser that was capable of scanning at 23.165 kHz (bidirectional) or 11.582 kHz (unidirectional). The free spectral range of the laser was ≈ 100 nm with a central wavelength of ≈ 1330 nm. The 6 dB roll off depth was measured to be at 2.5 mm. Furthermore, the structural morphology of a human finger and tadpole (Xenopus laevis) were evaluated. The overall volumetric footprint of the laser source was measured to be 70 times less than non-MEMS swept sources. Continued work on the miniaturization of OCT system is on going. It is hypothesized that the overall laser size can be reduced for suitable OCT imaging for a point of care application.

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