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Side-Looking Fiber-Optic Probe With a Focused Spot

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000044103D
Original Publication Date: 1984-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-05
Document File: 2 page(s) / 50K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Strope, DH: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Side-looking fiber-optic probes have been used in the past but have not been manufactured to produce a focused spot of light (Fig. 1). A different technique is provided to produce a focused spot offering variable focal distance. This is important depending on whether the probe will be used for imaging or to detect reflected light. In either case by adjusting the mirror-to-lens distance, the light beam can be made to focus at a variable distance outside the perimeter of the probe body. The combination of a commercially available fiber-optic probe with microlens 11 (Fig. 2), a small mirror 12 and protective sleeve 13 is easily produced. The small mirror 12 is manufactured by polishing a second piece of glass fiber on a 45Πangle and then depositing silver on the polished surface.

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Side-Looking Fiber-Optic Probe With a Focused Spot

Side-looking fiber-optic probes have been used in the past but have not been manufactured to produce a focused spot of light (Fig. 1). A different technique is provided to produce a focused spot offering variable focal distance. This is important depending on whether the probe will be used for imaging or to detect reflected light. In either case by adjusting the mirror-to-lens distance, the light beam can be made to focus at a variable distance outside the perimeter of the probe body. The combination of a commercially available fiber-optic probe with microlens 11 (Fig. 2), a small mirror 12 and protective sleeve 13 is easily produced. The small mirror 12 is manufactured by polishing a second piece of glass fiber on a 45OE angle and then depositing silver on the polished surface. These probes are very small with the optical fiber diameter ranging between .005 and .010 inch. For these diameters, and with focal distances between .010 to .02 inch, a numerical aperture (NA) of .24 is typical. An alternate way to produce this thin lens effect is to polish the needed curvature on the end of the fiber.

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