Improved Spatial Light Modulator (SLM) with Genetically Engineered BR
94-1 06.03 4100
Improved Spatial Light Modulator (SLM) with Genetically Engineered
This proposal is aimed at development of optically reconfigurable
spatial light modulators (SLMs) based on genetically engineered
bacteriorhodopsin (BR). BR is a photochromic protein found in the
cell walls of the bacterium Halobacterium halobium. The protein
contains retinal, which acts as a photoactivated proton pump--
during the pumping cycle the retinal absorbs light and goes through
at least eight metastable intermediate states, all with different
absorption maxima, spanning virtually the entire visible spectrum.
Bend Research has developed methods for incorporating BR into high-
optical-quality films that show striking photochromic behavior.
These films can be used as SLMs in real-time optical processing.
The new BR variants that are the subject of this proposal will
greatly expand the utility of these SLMs, permitting their use in
optical-processing applications such as edge and image enhancement,
image deblurring, motion correction and detection, and pattern
If the proposed research is successful in Phase I and Phase II, a
new generation of photochromic material will be developed. It will
function as a material for real-time SLMs. Potential early
commercial applications include optical processing (such as various
types of image correction), motion detection, pattern recognition,
and Schlieren detection of phase aberrations. Such real-time SLMs
will ultimately be useful in optical switching and computing, as
Bend Research, Inc.
64550 Research Road
Bend, OR 97701-8599