An array illuminator converts a uniformly wide beam losslessly into an array of bright spots. These spots provide the necessary illumination for microcomponents such as optical logic gates or bistable elements. Such elements may serve as devices in a 2-D discrete parallel processor. We propose an array illuminator with a phase grating on its front end. The phase grating is illuminated uniformly and then converted into an amplitude image by means of a phase contrast setup. The bright spots of the amplitude image are to be used for illuminating the array of microdevices of a digital optical computer.
© 1988 Optical Society of America
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