PDMS-based, magnetically actuated variable optical attenuators obtained by soft lithography and inkjet printing technologies
This paper reports and compares the implementation of magnetic variable optical attenuators (M-VOA) by two fabrication strategies. In the first case, a two-layer structure containing a non-doped polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) layer on a magnetic PDMS (M-PDMS) layer is fabricated by soft lithography (SLT). M-PDMS is obtained by doping PDMS with different ferrofluid (FF) volumes. The second technology consists of selectively dispense FF microdroplets using the inkjet printing technique (UP) on a non-doped, non-cured PDMS structure, previously defined by SLT. In this second case, FF volumes are encapsulated inside the polymer matrix. The optical and mechanical properties of structures fabricated using both strategies and containing similar ferrofluid amounts are compared. (C) 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.