Article

Photonic band-gap formation by optical-phase-mask lithography

Department of Physics, University of Toronto, 60 St. George Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5S 1A7, Canada.
Physical Review E (Impact Factor: 2.33). 05/2006; 73(4 Pt 2):046610. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.73.046610
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT We demonstrate an approach for fabricating photonic crystals with large three-dimensional photonic band gaps (PBG's) using single-exposure, single-beam, optical interference lithography based on diffraction of light through an optical phase mask. The optical phase mask (OPM) consists of two orthogonally oriented binary gratings joined by a thin, solid layer of homogeneous material. Illuminating the phase mask with a normally incident beam produces a five-beam diffraction pattern which can be used to expose a suitable photoresist and produce a photonic crystal template. Optical-phase-mask Lithography (OPML) is a major simplification from the previously considered multibeam holographic lithography of photonic crystals. The diffracted five-beam intensity pattern exhibits isointensity surfaces corresponding to a diamondlike (face-centered-cubic) structure, with high intensity contrast. When the isointensity surfaces in the interference patterns define a silicon-air boundary in the resulting photonic crystal, with dielectric contrast 11.9 to 1, the optimized PBG is approximately 24% of the gap center frequency. The ideal index contrast for the OPM is in the range of 1.7-2.3. Below this range, the intensity contrast of the diffraction pattern becomes too weak. Above this range, the diffraction pattern may become too sensitive to structural imperfections of the OPM. When combined with recently demonstrated polymer-to-silicon replication methods, OPML provides a highly efficient approach, of unprecedented simplicity, for the mass production of large-scale three-dimensional photonic band-gap materials.

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