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Differentially-driven MEMS spatial light modulator

United States Patent

September 14, 2004
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory - Visit the Industrial Partnerships Office Website
A MEMS SLM and an electrostatic actuator associated with a pixel in an SLM. The actuator has three electrodes: a lower electrode; an upper electrode fixed with respect to the lower electrode; and a center electrode suspended and actuable between the upper and lower electrodes. The center electrode is capable of resiliently-biasing to restore the center electrode to a non-actuated first equilibrium position, and a mirror is operably connected to the center electrode. A first voltage source provides a first bias voltage across the lower and center electrodes and a second voltage source provides a second bias voltage across the upper and center electrodes, with the first and second bias voltages determining the non-actuated first equilibrium position of the center electrode. A third voltage source provides a variable driver voltage across one of the lower/center and upper/center electrode pairs in series with the corresponding first or second bias voltage, to actuate the center electrode to a dynamic second equilibrium position.
Stappaerts; Eddy A. (San Ramon, CA)
The Regents of the University of California (Oakland, CA)
10/ 340,317
January 9, 2003
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.