A plurality of glass or metal wires are precisely etched to form the desired shape of the individual channels of the final polycapillary optic. This shape is created by carefully controlling the withdrawal speed of a group of wires from an etchant bath. The etched wires undergo a subsequent operation to create an extremely smooth surface. This surface is coated with a layer of material which is selected to maximize the reflectivity of the radiation being used. This reflective surface may be a single layer of material, or a multilayer coating for optimizing the reflectivity in a narrower wavelength interval. The collection of individual wires is assembled into a close-packed multi-wire bundle, and the wires are bonded together in a manner which preserves the close-pack configuration, irrespective of the local wire diameter. The initial wires are then removed by either a chemical etching procedure or mechanical force. In the case of chemical etching, the bundle is generally segmented by cutting a series of etching slots. Prior to removing the wire, the capillary array is typically bonded to a support substrate. The result of the process is a bundle of precisely oriented radiation-reflecting hollow channels. The capillary optic is used for efficiently collecting and redirecting the radiation from a source of radiation which could be the anode of an x-ray tube, a plasma source, the fluorescent radiation from an electron microprobe, a synchrotron radiation source, a reactor or spallation source of neutrons, or some other source.
STATEMENT AS TO RIGHTS TO INVENTIONS MADE UNDER FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
This invention was made with Government support under Grant No. DE-FG0396ER82185 awarded by the Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in this invention.