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Microshutters With Fast Switching Time for Highly Integrated Spectrometers

In contemporary spectrometers the wavelength selection is obtained through a dispersing optical element and a linear detector. The introduction of micro-cantilevers with fast response time, used as micro-shutters, allows the possibility to adopt a single sensing detector.

A glass substrate coated by a conductive layer of ITO is covered by an insulating layer of silicon oxide. The movable part is comprised of a flexible metallic layer, fastened at one end on the dielectric and suspended by elastic forces on it in a circular shape. The part fastened on the substrate has the double function of a conductive line to switch, line-by-line, and to hold the flexible elements on the dielectric. Dividing the transparent electrode on glass by columns, each cantilever can be individually controlled. Applying an appropriate voltage between the electrodes, the flexible one changes its position, rolling on the surface of the dielectric.

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