A Prism-Based Optical Readout Method for MEMS Bimaterial Infrared Sensors

Adiyan, Ulas, Civitci, Fehmi, Ferhanoglu, Onur, Torun, Hamdi and Urey, Hakan (2016) A Prism-Based Optical Readout Method for MEMS Bimaterial Infrared Sensors. IEEE Photonics Technology Letters, 28 (17). pp. 1866-1869. ISSN 1041-1135

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1109/LPT.2016.2574123


This letter demonstrates a novel prism-based optical-readout, which uses a single prism to detect the incoming TM polarized wave just below the critical angle. The method is used with a 35-μm-pixel pitch MEMS thermal sensor, whose inclination angle changes with the absorbed infrared (IR) radiation that results in an increase in the reflectivity at the prism's glass-air interface. We compared this approach with the conventional knife-edge method. Noise equivalent temperature difference for a single sensor was measured as 200 mK for knife-edge method, and 154 mK for the proposed critical angle approach. Our approach shows a significant improvement for the sensitivity of the IR sensor. Both methods utilize an AC-coupled readout method for a single MEMS pixel using a photodetector, which responds only to changes in the scene. This method can be scaled to achieve smart pixel cameras for read sensor arrays with low-noise and high-dynamic range.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Thermo-mechanical MEMS, IR detection, optical readout, AC coupling, critical angle
Subjects: H600 Electronic and Electrical Engineering
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Mathematics, Physics and Electrical Engineering
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2018 10:43
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 10:03
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/33060

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