MDL’s precision optical devices are at the heart of instruments that realize new capabilities across wavelengths from the ultraviolet to far-infrared.
MDL’s Optical Components Group develops electron-beam lithography techniques to fabricate unique optics that enable JPL instruments to perform novel measurements and achieve unmatched performance. Our portfolio of e-beam fabrication processes includes binary nano-patterning of metals, semiconductors, and dielectrics, and analog surface-relief (gray-scale) profiling of polymer resists that can be transfer etched into dielectric and semiconductor substrates. These techniques allow creation of diffractive optics such as halftone coronagraph occulting masks, wire-grid polarizers, semiconductor laser gratings, blazed gratings, microlenses, and computer-generated holograms, for wavelengths from ultraviolet to long-wave infrared. Further, we have developed the capability to electron-beam fabricate these diffractive optics on non-flat (convex or concave) substrates with several millimeters of height variation.