Skip to Content
Find More Like This
Return to Search

Optical displacement sensor

United States Patent

April 8, 2008
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
An optical displacement sensor is disclosed which uses a vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) coupled to an optical cavity formed by a moveable membrane and an output mirror of the VCSEL. This arrangement renders the lasing characteristics of the VCSEL sensitive to any movement of the membrane produced by sound, vibrations, pressure changes, acceleration, etc. Some embodiments of the optical displacement sensor can further include a light-reflective diffractive lens located on the membrane or adjacent to the VCSEL to control the amount of lasing light coupled back into the VCSEL. A photodetector detects a portion of the lasing light from the VCSEL to provide an electrical output signal for the optical displacement sensor which varies with the movement of the membrane.
Carr; Dustin W. (Albuquerque, NM)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
11/ 314,335
December 20, 2005
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.