A kinoform that shapes the divergent beam from a semiconductor laser without using any other optical components was designed and fabricated. The kinoform-only concept means that the kinoform must perform both the actual beam shaping as well as focusing the divergent laser beam, correcting for the astigmatism of the laser, and correcting for the spherical aberration of the laser exit window. A rectangular beam of dimensions 1000 μm × 300 μm is formed 42 mm behind the kinoform. Of the total output from the laser, some 50% is incident upon the kinoform, of which ∼50% will appear in the rectangular beam. The intensity uniformity error within the rectangle increases from the design value of 8% to 38% because of sensitivity to fabrication errors. The kinoform-only design for beam-shaping applications requires high manufacturing accuracy but is attractive because a system using such a component is easily mounted and aligned and, with the use of kinoform-replication techniques, can be mass produced at low cost.
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