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Opt Express. 2004 Apr 5;12(7):1294-303.

Realization of refractive microoptics through grayscale lithographic patterning of photosensitive hybrid glass.


Refractive microlenses with more than 50 microm sag are fabricated using grayscale lithography. Mechanical assembly features are made simultaneously alongside the microlenses to facilitate high precision assembly of miniature optical systems. The microlens elements are formed using lithographic patterning of photosensitive hybrid sol-gel glass requiring no etch transfer to the substrate material. Grayscale lithography enables the straightforward patterning of aspheric lenses and arbitrary surfaces within the material depth. Lessons learned in the design of a grayscale photomask are described. Characterization of the fabricated lens elements is reported including lens shape, surface quality, and image quality of a complete assembled imaging system.

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