Photonics Spectra Preview - July 2023

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Here is your first look at the articles in the upcoming July issue of Photonics Spectra.

Laser Scanners

Laser processing at the nanoscale is gaining prominence for applications such as two-photon polymerization (2PP) and selective etching of glass. Such processes rely on ultrafast lasers that employ high numerical aperture optics to achieve their sub-micrometer spot size. Such resolutions have raised the challenge of positioning the beam with sufficient precision and accuracy. Aerotech’s Bryan Germann describes the engineering process behind one potential solution: a high-dynamic laser scan head based on galvanometer servo motors and precision linear motors to extend the scanning range beyond a fixed field of view. His article will also share application examples of the technology in practice.

Key Technologies: Femtosecond lasers, laser scanning and positioning systems, motion control, micromachining


The semiconductor industry is creating increasingly complex heterogeneous structures for 2.5D and 3D IC packaging. The trend is prompting a corresponding need for increasingly precise laser tools to resolve defects that reside deep within these heterogeneous structures. Next-generation package analysis techniques need to keep pace. Laser micromachining opens new perspectives and opportunities in the world of sample preparation. Boris Rottwinkel of 3D-Micromac AG will describe how lasers are introducing new options for enabling fast, clean, and efficient ablation for sample prep in a wide range of analytical systems.

Key Technologies: Picosecond and femtosecond lasers, beam steering, deflection mirrors, laser micromachining, semiconductor packaging and/or test & measurement are the end-application

Ultrafast Lasers

Pulsed X-rays from synchrotrons are a vital tool for test and measurement applications in various industries as well as for novel medical therapies. If they only were a bit smaller... Ultrafast-pulsed lasers could offer a solution by providing more compact and efficient version of the secondary sources required to generate the unique photons and particles that currently require a synchotron or particle accelerator to produce. Contributing editor Andreas Thoss looks at work currently underway at DESY, the German accelerator research center, to develop more compact laser-based secondary sources and he looks beyond to explore the commercial prospects for these sources.

Key Technologies: Ultrafast-pulsed lasers (femtosecond)

Digital Holography for Optical Measurement

All optical systems, from smartphone cameras to extreme-ultraviolet photolithography optics are increasingly pressed to deliver higher performance. Precision metrology plays a crucial role in this pursuit, and digital holography tools have increasingly been part of that role. The development of digital holography took many years and was paced by improvements in cameras and computers. Today, holographic metrology methods, such as digital refocusing, are not only competitive but also are increasingly integrated into other metrology tools. Contributing editor Marie Freebody looks at the evolution of digital holography as an optical measurement tool and surveys the current state-of the-art.

Key Technologies: Digital holography, interferometry based on digital cameras, computer generated holograms, (measurement of) freeform optics and aspheres, laser Fizeau interferometers, interference microscopy,

Hyperspectral Imaging for Agriculture

Given that the world's population is expected to increase from 7.7 billion currently to 9.7 billion in 2050, vertical crop cultivation can contribute to the solution by relying, in part, on advanced technologies to closely monitor crop parameters and nutrients to optimize yields in a compact setting. Hyperspectral imaging could be vital o this goal, as it can provide valuable information such as the presence of macro elements critical to crop health. Specim's Minna Törmälä discusses how hyperspectral imaging can be used to obtain information for vegetation analysis and its benefits for vertical farming.

Key Technologies: Hyperspectral imaging

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Published: May 2023

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