Micro-opto-mechanical systems (MOMS)
Warren, Mial E. Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico.
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Miniaturized opto-mechanical devices or assemblies that are typically formed using micromachining techniques that borrow heavily from the microelectronics industry. The term may be used to distinguish devices and microsystems that combine optical and mechanical functions without the use of internal electronic devices or signals. Systems that use electronic devices as part of the microsystem may be referred to as MOEMS (micro-opto-electro-mechanical systems). In some cases, these terms may be used synonymously. A related area is MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical systems), in which electronic and mechanical functions are combined in a miniature device or system, but not necessarily implementing optical functions. The progress of MOMS technology has been greatly enabled by the simultaneous development of microelectronics and optical fiber-based telecommunications technology. These two technologies have resulted in a large manufacturing and scientific base from which MOMS has been developed. The commonly used MOMS fabrication processes are the same as are used for variations of the MEMS fabrication processes with some additional materials choices, due to the need to be compatible with optical functions. See also: Integrated circuits; Micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS); Micro-opto-electro-mechanical systems (MOEMS); Optical communications
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