Abstract

Model calculations on the ellipsometric memory are presented. The ellipsometric memory is an n-bit optical memory whose information is extracted by use of the ellipsometric principle. The memory cells of the device consist of thin-film multilayer structures, and the information of each memory cell is contained in the optical properties of the thin films. Several thin-film multilayer structures were examined in order to find out how different choices of layer materials and other system parameters such as layer thicknesses and wavelength affect resolutions and limitations of the ellipsometric memory. Such calculations are also useful for optimizing the readout resolution. It was found that it is possible to use memory cells having up to at least eight layers, which would permit 8-bit words to be stored at each location. It was also found that, in principle, several types of materials can be used as layer materials, and various aspects of different choices of materials are discussed.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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