Sound Shapes Light for Speed
2013 R&D 100 Winner
High-resolution imaging, high-throughput scanning and laser processing share a common problem: Current approaches are not suited for non-flat surfaces or 3-D volumes because traditional optical systems can’t rapidly change the focal position or control the depth-of-field independently of the magnification. The TAG Lens 2.0 from TAG Optics Inc. solves these problems delivering ultra-high-speed z-direction tunability in a plug-and-play, computer-controlled lens that works with existing optical assemblies without sacrificing resolution. The world’s fastest varifocal device on the market, the TAG Lens 2.0 relies on sound to shape light, permitting scanning speeds that are more than 1,000 times faster than competing technologies.
The underlying technology was invented at Princeton Univ. in 2007. A sinusoidal electronic input in the radio frequency (RF) range creates a standing sound wave, which drives piezoelectric element vibrations. When electronically activated, the TAG Lens 2.0 focal length and effective aperture are governed by the amplitude and the frequency of the RF driving signal.
|Tag Optics Inc.'s TAGLens2.0 development team (l-r): Christian Theriault, David Amrhein, Craig B. Arnold.|
The TAGLens2.0 Development Team
Christian Theriault, Principal Developer, Tag Optics Inc.
Craig B. Arnold, Principal Developer, Tag Optics Inc.
David Amrhein, Tag Optics Inc.
Marti Duocastella, Princeton Univ.