Meta Optical Elements (Metalenses)
NIL Technology provides metalens solutions, from design to mass production, under one roof.
With metalenses, we develop unique solutions that improve efficiency and performance of optical applications whilst reducing the complexity and number of lens elements.
Dark field optical microscopy demonstrating lensing effect for a large range of wavelengths. The cover image shows a fresnel metalens, demonstrating pillars down to sub 100 nm diameters with perfect vertical sidewall
Metalenses made by NILT
Metalenses are a radical new flat lens technology that will disrupt optics used for sensing and imaging in consumer electronics, autonomous vehicles, AR/MR displays and more.
NIL Technology has a full process chain under one roof for metalens design, mastering, prototyping, testing and characterization, and manufacturing capabilities.
We provide custom-made solutions, ranging from pure metalens- to hybrid solutions. We can characterize metasurfaces for visible and IR applications up to ~2000 nm. Other beam shaping functions, such as diffusers and fan-out gratings can also be realized with metasurfaces.
NIL Technology has prefund and proven experience with designing and developing advanced optics by manufacturing of micro- and nano-patterned surface relief structures, and more than 50 years of experience of cumulative experience in thermal and UV NIL.
Combining the best to get the unique solutions
NILT takes optical applications to a new level of performance, efficiency, and compactness, by combining refractive, diffractive and meta optics. The result is optical design solutions for next generation sensing and imaging applications.
Mass production is done by nanoimprint (NIL) that takes advantage of the high-resolution and precision offered by electron beam lithography.
What are metalenses?
In 2019, World Economic Forum named metalenses as one of top 10 emerging technologies. Not without reason. They have powerful capabilities beyond traditional optical lenses with flat surfaces, reduced thickness, and improved quality across all optical component use cases.
Metalenses is a flat lens technology, made by optical components that use metasurfaces to focus light. They can be used in optical applications that take advantage of the flat surface and reduced thickness, compared to classic, curved refractive lenses that are mainly used in optical devices today.
Metalenses allow further miniaturization in sensors and different imaging devices, something that enables more cost-effective lens systems and lower integration complexity.
Meta-atoms and metasurfaces
Metalenses utilize the phase change that can be induced locally on a light wave by a small nano-sized feature. Nanostructures, often called meta-atoms, are often pillars of various cross sections and in many cases cylindrical. The induced phase change depends on the size and geometry of the meta-atoms. By properly selecting and distributing meta-atoms over a surface, the wavefront of an incoming light-wave can be shaped to almost any desired form. In this way, the light propagating away from the metasurface can be controlled accurately.
Metasurfaces are intrinsically wavelength dependent, which make them currently best suited for monochromatic applications, although great efforts are invested in the research community to improve the broadband behavior.