Aspherical optical lenses with spatially varying curvature are desired for capturing high quality, aberration free images in numerous optical applications. Conventionally such lenses are prepared by multistep top-down processes which are expensive, time-consuming, and prone to high failure rate. In this context, an alternate method is presented here based on arrested spreading of a sessile drop of a transparent, cross-linkable polymeric liquid on a solid substrate heated to an elevated temperature. Whereas surface tension driven flow tends to render it spherical, rapid cross-linking arrests such flow so that nonequilibrium aspherical shapes are attained. It is possible to tune also the initial state of the drop via delayed pinching of a liquid cylinder which precedes its release on the substrate. This method has led to the generation of a wide variety of optical lenses, ranging from spherical plano convex to superspherical solid immersion to exotic lenses not achieved via conventional methods.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces