Two-dimensional refractive index modulation by phased array transducers in acousto-optic deflectors.

Applied optics

PubMedID: 28157931

Wang T, Zhang C, Aleksov A, Salama I, Kar A. Two-dimensional refractive index modulation by phased array transducers in acousto-optic deflectors. Appl Opt. 2017;56(3):688-694.
Acousto-optic deflectors are photonic devices that are used for scanning high-power laser beams in advanced microprocessing applications such as marking and direct writing. The operation of conventional deflectors mostly relies on one-dimensional sinusoidal variation of the refractive index in an acousto-optic medium. Sometimes static phased array transducers, such as step configuration or planar configuration transducer architecture, are used to tilt the index modulation planes for achieving higher performance and higher resolution than a single transducer AO device. However, the index can be modulated in two dimensions, and the modulation plane can be tilted arbitrarily by creating dynamic phase gratings in the medium using phased array transducers. This type of dynamic two-dimensional acousto-optic deflector can provide better performance using, for example, a large deflection angle and high diffraction efficiency. This paper utilizes an ultrasonic beam steering approach to study the two-dimensional strain-induced index modulation due to the photoelastic effect. The modulation is numerically simulated, and the effects of various parameters, such as the operating radiofrequency of the transducers, the ultrasonic beam steering angle, and different combinations of pressure on each element of the transducer array, are demonstrated.