Micro Optics

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Micro optics are very small optical systems, typically between a few micrometers to a millimeter in size. They include optical fibers with a microscale core diameter, mini diffractive optical elements, micro optical mirrors, lenses prisms, and arrays of lenses.

Shanghai Optics produces a wide range of custom micro optics, and we can work with you to design and develop micro-optic lens assemblies to meet your exact specifications.

Types of Micro Optics

Microlens arrays are typically used for beam homogenization and shaping, and can be paired with anything from high powered LEDS to lasers. We offer square arrays in a standard 10 mm x 10 mm configuration, and can customize for desired lens pitch and focal length. These arrays, often used in pairs, are ideal for fiber coupling, laser ablation, and welding.

Our fly’s eye condenser arrays are suitable for situations where one would need a short working distance and large illuminated field, and are often selected for medical laser use, fluorescence microscopy and semiconductor instrumentation. They transform non-uniform light to a uniform irradiance distribution on the illumination plane. These optical components need no adjustment, and are a constructed using a two-dimensional array of dual-surface cylindrical microlenses.

Fiber optics are long, thin strands of pure, high quality glass. When arranged in bundles (optical cables) they can be used to transmit light signals over long distances, allowing data to be processed at the speed of light.

Optical fibers consist of three parts. The core is a thin glass center which transmits light. Surrounding it is the cladding, an outer layer of glass with a higher refractive index which reflects light into the core. This cladding is approximately ten times the diameter of the core. Around both layers is a plastic buffer coating which protects the fiber.

For transmission of laser light, single mode fibers are used. These have small cores, about 8-10 microns in diameter, and transmit light directly down the fiber in transverse mode. Single mode fibers have applications in telephone, Cable TV, and internet signal.

Multi-mode fibers, with cores of 50-100 microns in diameter, are used to transmit infrared light. Multi-mode cables are useful for relaying data over relatively short distances (under 600 meters) but are not efficient for longer distances because of modal dispersion. They are specified with two numbers, their core and cladding diameters. A 62.5/125 μm multi-mode fiber would have a core diameter of 62.5 micrometers and a cladding with 125 micrometer diameter.

Special purpose optical fiber can be constructed with a non-cylindrical core or cladding.

Shanghai Optics also manufactures high quality micro prisms. These prisms can direct light from one optical channel to another, and are suitable for fiber optic applications or for use as a circulator, interleaver, or MEMs. High reflectivity minimizes signal loss, and the precise engineering of these prisms enable precise deviation.


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