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Fractal Zone Plates and Spherical Zone Plates:A literature review

Fractal Zone Plates and Spherical Zone Plates:A literature review

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A literature review from the perspective of using Fractal and Spherical zone plate as light concentrating optical elements
A literature review from the perspective of using Fractal and Spherical zone plate as light concentrating optical elements

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Published by: Ali on Aug 16, 2010
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10/25/2012

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Some interesting Zone Plate Designs Previous reports have illustrated the incapability of plane zone plates to produce

a single point of focus as their design is inherently dependent on wavelength of the focused light, unless the size is reduced beyond photolithographic limits. In this report, we look at some other designs that are contained in literature like Spherical and Fractal zone plates. Spherical Zone Plate Being non-aplanatic, a plane zone plate doesn¶t satisfy the Abbe sine condition that is required to satisfy sharp imaging properties of axial as well off-axial points at the focal point of the lens. As a remedy, spherical zone plate diffraction grating has been introduced (2). In theory, this spherical grating is capable of reducing and removing spherical aberration but not chromatic. The way forward using this lens is to have a wavelength splitting mechanism that can be used to focus a narrow band of wavelength on the plate, which then forms an aplanatic or singly focussed image at the centre of curvature (2). However, in this case too, there is clear evidence of design dependence on wavelength. Although, spherical circular zone plates can be proven to have better diffraction efficiencies than plane zone plates, the general belief that their focusing properties are superior or inferior to plane zone plates is incorrect as these are a function of the joining properties and dimensions of the lens (1). It has been shown that for spherical zone plates with different thicknesses and number of zones but same focal length (primary), the diffraction efficiency rises with its profile changing from plane, spherical, parabolic to finally conical. The % bandwidth decreases with such a profile change. Also, the notion that a spherical zone plate is capable of providing a single or less distorted axial irradiance has been proved incorrect by irradiance graphs that indicate the closeness of the axial irradiance pattern with that obtained by a plane zone plate. Blazing of spherical zone plates at a blazing wavelength and forming a kinoform, as it is popularly known, are emerging optical elements especially for IR and visible wavelengths (3). The design limitations imposed by minimum zone width and size of the plate apply as decisively for spherical zone plates as they do for plane zone plates. While obtaining a single focal point is not possible even in this case, there is to some extent a considerable control over the spherical and chromatic aberrations encountered. The reduction in aberrations brought about by these designs can be shown to improve irradiance, either over specific or very narrow bands of wavelengths. Fractal Zone Plates Fractal is a word used to define fractional dimensions and the interest in zone plates based on such fractional dimensions is because of the unique self-replicating patterns they cause on the focal plane (5). These too, have multiple foci each with replicating patterns around their maximum. Upon the incidence of white light, different wavelength come to focus at different points, each maximum bearing their replicating features that overlap with other maxima and cause extension in depth of focus and reduce chromatic aberration as a result (4). The advantage

with Fractal zone plate is that they help to control the focussing properties with an additional parameter called µlacunarity¶, which is the measure of emptiness in the fractal pattern. Increase in lacunarity, for example can cause reduction in either width of the zones of the original fractal pattern or reduction of continuous circular zones into zones with spots dotted around the pattern. The latter design is called a Fractal Photon Sieve (FPS). FPS has highest illumination at the primary focus and all the higher order odd zones are highly reduced in their respective intensities and this affect comes at the expense of reduction in intensities of even order zones as well (5). Lacunarity is one control parameter that just impacts the intensity and not the self-replicating property as it has been proved to be independent of lacunarity. An improvement in FPS design is in the form of a Polyadic Lacunar Fractal Photon Sieve or Polyadic LFPS, which has a high intensity main focus which is much higher than secondary focus. In effect, the distribution of spots in a LFPS can be used to control and suppress the higher order foci intensities (4). The spot sizes of the illumination provided by these fractal designed zone plates are same as the spot sizes provided by the Fresnel zone plates. One advantageous deduction that can be made from the selfreplicating focussing property of Fractal Zone plates is that it can considerably reduce the problem of spot sizes being either larger than the solar cell or smaller as both cases have some problems. The sub-foci that flank the main focal irradiance can be altered to cause a rather uniform intensity around the main focus, in a doughnut form causing the covering of the whole solar cell surface with sub-foci. This increases the depth of focus for white light by causing overlapping of several wavelengths effectively reducing the chromatic aberration. Concluding note Spherical Zone plates uniquely provide for stigmatic focussing of on-axial points making them apt for use as secondary elements in compound concentration systems. Fractal Zone plates, on the other hand, have unique self-replicating properties such that each focus has sub-foci flanking it forming a doughnut form of illumination at the absorber plane. The lacunarity parameter offers extended control over the number of sub-foci (6) to affect the increase in irradiance of the main focus at the expense of all other higher order foci and can also affect the spot size of the main focus. As an extension, a compound system that perhaps incorporates either or both of the above mentioned designs for concentration will be interesting to look at. There is a need to accomplish complicated measurements using the diffraction theory while considering the above mentioned designs in conjunction with each other, to arrive at a possible indication of very high irradiance at acceptable sizes of optical elements under feasible lithographic limits. References (no particular referencing format followed for now) 1. Hristo D. Hristov, L. P. Kamburov, J. R. Urumov and Rodolfo Feick, µFocussing characteristics of curvilinear Half-Open Fresnel Zone Plate Lenses: Plane wave illumination¶, IEEE transactions on antennas and propagation, vol. 53, no. 6, June 2005. 2. M. V. R. K. Murty, µSpherical zone plate Diffraction grating¶, March 1960.

3. Hazra, L. N. , Han, Y. and Delisle, C. A.(1993) 'Stigmatic Imaging by Spherical Fresnel Zone Plates', Journal of Modern Optics, 40: 8, 1531 ² 1545 4. Walter D. Furlan and Genaro Saavedra, µFractal zone plates for wideband imaging with low chromatic aberration and extended depth of field¶ 5. Laura Remon, Fernando Giménez, Walter D. Furlan and Juan A. Monsoriu, (2009), µFractal diffractive lenses with improved diffraction efficiency¶, Recent Res. Devel. Optics. 6. Omel Mendoza-Yero, Mercedes Fernández-Alonso, Gladys Mínguez-Vega, Jesús Lancis, Vicent Climent, and Juan A. Monsoriu, (2008), µFractal generalized zone plates¶,Optical Society of America.

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