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Microelectromechanical mirrors and electrically-programmable diffraction gratings based on two-stage actuation

United States Patent

November 22, 2005
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A microelectromechanical (MEM) device for redirecting incident light is disclosed. The MEM device utilizes a pair of electrostatic actuators formed one above the other from different stacked and interconnected layers of polysilicon to move or tilt an overlying light-reflective plate (i.e. a mirror) to provide a reflected component of the incident light which can be shifted in phase or propagation angle. The MEM device, which utilizes leveraged bending to provide a relatively-large vertical displacement up to several microns for the light-reflective plate, has applications for forming an electrically-programmable diffraction grating (i.e. a polychromator) or a micromirror array.
Allen; James J. (Albuquerque, NM), Sinclair; Michael B. (Albuquerque, NM), Dohner; Jeffrey L. (Albuquerque, NM)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
10/ 722,237
November 24, 2003
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.