A new technique for generation of binary masks for the fabrication of diffractive optical elements is investigated. This technique, which uses commercially available desktop-publishing hardware and software in conjunction with a standard photoreduction camera, is much faster and less expensive than the conventional methods. The short turnaround time and low cost should give researchers a much greater degree of flexibility in the field of binary optics and enable wider application of diffractive-optics technology. Techniques for generating optical elements by using standard software packages that produce PostScript output are described. An evaluation of the dimensional fidelity of the mask reproduction from design to its realization in photoresist is presented.
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