What is metasurface optics?


At present, metasurface optics technology has attracted much attention. To put it simply, metasurface optical technology mainly uses metasurface design methods to replace traditional optical designs, or to achieve some new functions that cannot be achieved by traditional optical designs.

An important application of metasurface optics technology in replacing traditional optical design is in microlens design. In the traditional optical design based on refractive lenses, the size of the visible light lens is difficult to make small, so for some future applications that require size and weight (such as next-generation smartphones and ARVR devices), the new size and weight are smaller and lighter. The lens of , is getting more and more attention, and metasurface technology can meet this need very well. Metasurface lenses realize large-scale subwavelength-scale device arrays by using semiconductor lithography on silicon or glass wafers, which can greatly reduce the size of the lens and improve various parameters of the lens (such as light transmission efficiency, etc.). For example, a leader in the field of metasurface research, Harvard professor Federico Capasso proposed a large-scale metasurface lens realized by mature DUV technology, which can realize functions that traditionally require convex lenses on flat glass wafers. Reduce the size, thickness and weight required for optical designs.

In addition to thin and light lenses, metasurface lenses can also achieve functions that are difficult to achieve with traditional optical designs. For example, polarized light imaging can be easily achieved by controlling the polarization properties of incident light through metasurface design. In addition, metasurfaces can also easily realize the selective characteristics of high-performance optical frequencies, so microscopic optical spectrometers can be realized through metasurface lens arrays. These features that cannot be achieved by traditional lenses may have important applications in next-generation machine vision applications. For example, polarization imaging can help assisted driving to complete high-quality road visual inspection in rainy and snowy weather, and spectrum analyzers can be used to analyze product quality. chemical composition, etc.

Another important innovation in metasurface optical design is the realization of semiconductor optics. In the traditional image sensor module design, the image sensor chip and the optical lens design are usually implemented in completely different processes and design processes, and then the assembly process is completed. The assembly process is costly due to the use of a completely different process. After using metasurface optics, both the image sensor and lens design can be realized in the semiconductor process, and the two can also be conveniently packaged together with low cost and high yield using mature semiconductor packaging technology. Therefore, we believe that metasurface optical design may bring revolutionary changes to the design of image sensor modules.

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