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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including those from the School of Psychological Sciences & Health - but also papers by researchers based within the Faculties of Science, Engineering, Humanities & Social Sciences, and from the Strathclyde Business School.

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Nano-stepper driven optical shutter for applications in free-space micro-optics

Zawadzka, J. and Li, L. and Unamuno, A. and Uttamchandani, D.G. (2002) Nano-stepper driven optical shutter for applications in free-space micro-optics. In: Conference on MEMS/MOEMS Technologies and Applications, 2002-10-17 - 2002-10-18.

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In this paper we report a simple design of a micro-optical shutter/attenuator. The standard MUMPS process was used to fabricate the device. A vertically erected, gold-coated, 200x300 mum side length micro-mirror was precisely placed between the end faces of two closely spaced optical fibers. The position of the micro-mirror with respect to the optical fiber end face was controlled by a nano-stepping motor array. Optical and mechanical tests were performed on the device. A 1.55 mum laser beam was sent along the optical fiber. When the micro-mirror was removed from the front of the fiber, the coupling efficiency between two fibers was -10 dBm. Once the micro-mirror was placed in the optical path the coupling efficiency dropped to -51.5 dBm. The best attenuation was obtained when the micro-mirror blocked the whole cross-section of the laser beam diameter. It is evident that the device can operate as a high precision fiber optic attenuator or shutter.