Metal-mesh achromatic half-wave plate for use at submillimeter wavelengths.
ABSTRACT A metal-mesh achromatic half-wave plate (HWP) has been designed, manufactured, and tested for potential use in millimeter and submillimeter astronomical instruments. The prototype device presented here is based on a 12-grid Shatrow [IEEE Trans. Antennas Propag. 43, 109 (1995)] recipe to operate over the frequency range of 120-180 GHz. Transmission line modeling and finite-element analysis [Ansoft HFSS website: http://www.ansoft.com/hfss/] were used to optimize the design geometrical parameters in terms of the device transmission, reflection, absorption, phase-shift, and cross-polarization as a function of frequency. The resulting prototype device was constructed and characterized using incoherent radiation from a polarizing Fourier transform spectrometer to explore its frequency and polarization behavior. These measurements are shown to be in excellent agreement with the models. Lists of the achieved HWP performance characteristics are reported.
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ABSTRACT: The successful European Space Agency (ESA) Planck mission has mapped the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) temperature anisotropy with unprecedented accuracy. However, Planck was not designed to detect the polarised components of the CMB with comparable precision. The BICEP2 collaboration has recently reported the first detection of the B-mode polarisation. ESA is funding the development of critical enabling technologies associated with B-mode polarisation detection, one of these being large diameter half-wave plates. We compare different polarisation modulators and discuss their respective trade-offs in terms of manufacturing, RF performance and thermo-mechanical properties. We then select the most appropriate solution for future satellite missions, optimized for the detection of B-modes.
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ABSTRACT: We describe a novel multilayered metal-mesh achromatic half-wave plate (HWP) for use in astronomical polarimetric instruments. The HWP is designed to operate across the frequency range from 125 to 250 GHz. The wave plate is manufactured from 12 layers of thin film metallic inductive and capacitive grids patterned onto polypropylene sheets, which are then bonded together using a hot-pressing technique. Transmission line modeling and three-dimensional electromagnetic simulations are used to optimize the parameters of the metal-mesh patterns and to evaluate their optical properties. A prototype HWP has been fabricated, and its performance is characterized in a polarizing Fourier transform spectrometer. The device performance is consistent with the modeling, although the measured differential phase shift for two orthogonal polarizations is lower than expected. This difference is likely to result from imperfect patterning of individual layers and misalignment of the grids during manufacture.Applied Optics 07/2011; 50(21):3750-7. DOI:10.1364/AO.50.003750 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We describe a novel artificial dielectric material which has applications at millimetre and submillimetre wavelengths. The material is manufactured from layers of metal mesh patterned onto thin polypropylene sheets which are then bonded together using a hot pressing process to provide planar rugged discs which can be reliably cycled to cryogenic temperatures. The refractive index of this material can be tuned by adjusting the geometry and spacing of the metal-mesh layers. We demonstrate its usage by designing and characterising a broadband anti-reflection coating for a Z-cut crystalline Quartz plate. The coating was fabricated and applied to the quartz using the hot press technique and characterized using a Fourier Transform Spectrometer. The performance is shown to be in good agreement with HFSS and transmission line modelling results.Applied Optics 07/2011; 48(35). DOI:10.1364/AO.48.006635 · 1.78 Impact Factor