Photonic Microsystems from LIGA Technology
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Due to its almost complete freedom in lateral structuring, to the large choice of materials, and to the cheap mass production feature, LIGA technology offers new possibilities to realise photonic microsystems, either integrated or microoptical. In particular, advantages can be expected with respect to systems combining optically nonlinear with linear materials and concerning flux and flux density of the optical energy flow. It is found that the optical Kerr coefficient n2 of an interesting nonlinear material must exceed a lower limit, i.e., n2 > (λΔø/2πI0)α , in order to be useful for photonic microsystems. Herein, X is the wavelength, Δø/2π the phase shift caused by the nonlinear part of the microsystem, I0 the energy flux density of the incident light, and a the absorption coefficient of the nonlinear material. Bubeck and coworkers have given relationships between a and n2 for a variety of organic materials. In case of a recently described phthalocyaninatoruthenium complex the optical Kerr coefficient and the 3rd order susceptibility should satisfy n2 > 4·10−14 m2/W and x(3) > 4·10−8 esu, respectively, at λ = 680 nm, Δø/2π = 0.01, and I0 = 100 MW/cm2 . This material comes close to these requirements.
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