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7 March 2014 A robust design and fabrication of micromachined electro-absorptive optical modulator for 3D imaging
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A time-of-flight (TOF) based three dimensional (3D) image capturing system and its enhanced optical modulating device are presented. The 3D image capturing system includes 850nm IR emitter (typically compact Laser diodes) and high speed image modulator, so called optical shutter. The optical shutter consists of multi-layered optical resonance cavity and electro-absorptive layers. The optical shutter is a solid-state controllable filter which modulates the IR image to extract the phase delay due to TOF of the emitting IR light. This presentation especially addresses robustness issues and solutions when operated under practical environments such as ambient temperature variation and existence of strong ambient light (e.g. outdoors). The wavelength of laser diode varies substantially depending on the ambient temperature, which degrades the modulation efficiency. To get a robust operation, the bandwidth of transmittance of the optical shutter is drastically improved with a novel coupled Fabry-Perot resonance cavity design to come up with the wavelength variation of the laser diode. Also, to suppress the interference of solar irradiance to IR source signal, a novel driving scheme is applied, in which IR light and optical shutter modulation duties are timely localized, i. e. ‘bursted’. Suggested novel optical shutter design and burst driving scheme enable capturing of a full HD resolution of depth image under the realistic usage environments, which so far tackle the commercialization of TOF cameras. Design, fabrication, and evaluation of the optical shutter; and, 3D capturing system prototype, image test results are presented.
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Yong-Hwa Park, Yong-Chul Cho, Jang-Woo You, Chang-Young Park, Heesun Yoon, Sang-Hun Lee, Byung Hoon Na, Gun Wu Ju, Hee Ju Choi, and Yong Tak Lee "A robust design and fabrication of micromachined electro-absorptive optical modulator for 3D imaging", Proc. SPIE 8977, MOEMS and Miniaturized Systems XIII, 89770C (7 March 2014);


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