MEMS Micromirror

Comprehensive characterization of mode shapes

Micromirror topography is recorded along the MEMS excitation period for each mode shape of its resonant frequency. This full-field measurement allow the MEMS designer to characterize micromirrors’:

  • Displacement amplitude, speed, acceleration, etc.
  • Scanning angles
  • Dynamic surface deformation
  • Mode shapes (Vibration amplitude maps and phase maps)
Dual axis micromirror vibrating @ 900Hz
3D vibration mode shape at 19kHz
3D vibration mode shape at 158kHz
3D vibration mode shape at 491kHz
3D vibration mode shape at 773kHz
Vibration amplitude map at 19kHz
Vibration amplitude map at 158kHz
Vibration amplitude map at 491kHz
Vibration amplitude map at 773kHz
Vibration phase map at 19kHz
Vibration phase map at 158kHz
Vibration phase map at 491kHz
Vibration phase map at 773kHz

Dynamic Deformation and Optical Aberration of Micromirrors

Measuring dynamic deformation at all scanning angles

A new achievement of measuring dynamic deformation of micromirrors by DHM® was presented in SPIE Photonics Europe 2022. Congratulations to our DHM users at Silicon Austria Labs GmbG !

DHM® is successfully configured to measure continuous dynamic deformation of a 1.3 mm diameter dual axis micromirror over scan angles range of ±3.9° for the slow axis and of ±5.4° for the fast one. A goniometer was introduced to modulate the angle under the micromirror. In combination with the stroboscopic module of DHM, they enables the imaging of the full-field dynamic topography at any scan angles during the cycle of the micromirror.


  • Courtesy of : Silicon Austria Labs GmbG, Austria
  • Device: Dual axis micromirror
  • Instrument: DHM® R-2100
  • Magnification: 2.5x


Measuring angle-resolved dynamic deformation of  micromirrors with digital stroboscopic holography

Pooja Thakkar , Clément Fleury, Markus Bainschab, Takashi Sasaki, Markus Zauner, Dominik Holzmann , Adrien Piot , and Jaka Pribošek*

in SPIE Photonics Europe 2022

Slow axis upscan and downscan micromirror dynamical deformation for a scan angle of ±4°
Illustration of a goniometer modulate scan angles to be perpendicular to imaging plane, and the processing flow from dynamic topography to surface deformation

Optical Aberrations Characterization

Dynamic measurements of the deformations enables to evaluate the optical aberrations at any phase of the mirror oscillations. For instance, at maximum scan angle of the micromirror, trefoil is visible for the fast axis when the low axis shows trefoil and comma.

In this particular example, slow axis has a dynamic deformation of 250 nm which leads to 8% drop in contrast compared to diffraction limit for the same aperture. The hysteresis observed in this axis, where difference in dynamic deformation for upscan and downscan is 45 nm, accounts for contrast loss of 0.6 %. Fast axis has dynamic deformation of 1600 nm which leads to drop in contrast of 96%. In fast axis mode, image quality degrades with increased angle.

The surface plot of measured dynamic deformation at maximum scan angle. Aberration such as Trefoil is visible for fast axis. Slow axis has Trefoil, Comma as dominant aberrations. Modulation transfer function resulting from deformation in mirror when operating in torsion mode and bending mode are presented in the plots respectively.

“I am very much impressed by the DHM, on how we can use the laser trigger pulses down to 7.5ns and record the high resolution- surface topographies of a high-speed scanning micromirrors. We received support from Yves on improving our measurements, to deal with high velocity at zero crossing of mirror. Also, I am grateful for his immediate responses and contribution to paper reviewing within a short notice period.”

Pooja thakkar, Junior Scientist, Photonic Systems, Silicon Austria Labs

“Besides having good enough resolution in all 4 dimensions to image such a small and mechanical deformation, the key aspect of stroboscopic holography for high deflection MEMS mirror is to explore the parameter window space first (full field) contrary to a scanning technique – i.e LDV – that would do it frequency first. This enables easy and precise measurement, and a straightforward processing scheme.”

Clement Fleury, Senior Researcher, Photonic Systems, Silicon Austria Labs

“Experimental characterization of dynamic deformation at larger optical scan angles has for long time remained underexplored. Digital holographic microscopy offers superior lateral, axial and temporal resolution, allowing us to study peculiar effects in angle resolved membrane dynamics. Lyncée Tec offers you the right tool for the job.”

Dr. Jaka Pribošek, Senior Scientist, Photonic Systems, Silicon Austria Labs

Resonant frequency analysis by DHM in three ways

1. Phase and Intensity Frequency scan with high temporal resolution

Frequency scan with high temporal resolution is the method providing the most accurate and complete information. It enables to investigate in- and out-of-plane linear and nonlinear resonances for the full frequency range from static up to 25 MHz, with a precision of 0.1 Hz, and with an interferometric resolution. This is possible as well in presence of complex geometry (presence of holes) and complex movements (combined tilt, in and out of plane displacements). It is an ideal method for resonance characterization. It can be used for certain samples in complement to one of the two others which may provide faster resonance detection. Considering the amount of information provided by the method, the analysis time is eventually very competitive.

This information is a real need for the dynamical analysis of MEMS with complex geometry, complex movement combining tilt of structure, in presence of sacrificial holes, or for a statistical analysis of a grid with multiple devices. The analysis of data provides quickly and efficiently displacement amplitude for any pixel of the image, Bode diagrams analysis, and resonance quality factor determination for any point of the field of view.

Thanks to the DHM® unique optical configuration and the large objective collection , it also enables measurement and frequency analysis through glass viewport in a vacuum environment.

Published in SPIE Photonic West 2013.

2D representation of the micro mirror topography with height coded in gray level. The point is analyzed in the right of the figure is shown in red. Right: from top to bottom: Out of plane displacement of the mirror at the location of the red point. Magnitude and phase Bode diagram of the resonance. The resonance of a micro-mirror is detected at 18,215 KHz. Quality factor of the resonance could be easily calculated form it. Frequency steps of 5 Hz have been used. Minimum step are 0.1 Hz.
Bode Diagram : amplitude comparison between atmospheric and vacuum condition

2. Frequency scan with Intensity measurements analysis

This second method performs a frequency scan with a sine wave, similarly to the first method. But only the intensity measurements are exploited. Moreover, instead of using short laser pulses compared to the period of the microsystem, laser pulses length is set equal to the duration of one period of the MEMS excitation. This method enables a fast scan of large range of frequencies and to determine quickly linear and nonlinear resonances, and their relative amplitude.

Frequency scan with intensity analysis provides a fast measurement of linear and nonlinear resonances for samples with vertical displacements amplitude larger than typically >100 nm, which is not a limitation for many samples. Contrary to the two other methods which provide both in- and out-of-plane displacements, only out-of-plane information can be exploited. It enables to investigate the full frequency range up to 25 MHz with resolution of 0.1 Hz.

Frequency scan with Intensity measurements analysis. The frequency scanning step has been set to 200. This value sets the frequency resolution. Minimum steps are 0.1 Hz.

3. Fourier transform of the system response

Fourier response analysis method is efficient and well known, but less sensitive as the excitation energy is spread into a large spectrum of frequencies. It enables determination of linear in- and out-of plane resonances over large frequency range in a reasonable time, without frequency scanning. The frequency resolution is not as high as for the two other methods; it is limited for practical reasons to about 100Hz. This can be a limit for high quality resonance detection. The topography is measured with an interferometric resolution. Its use for investigation of nonlinear resonance is generally not possible.

The right figure shows the Fourier analysis of the resonance of a micro-mirror using a DHM. A square excitation signal at 250 Hz is generated by the stroboscopic module to excite the mirror. This square contains a large spectrum of excitation frequencies. The micro mirror response is sampled with the stroboscopic synchronization. This time response is represented for a single point of the surface on the figure. The oscillations are the signature of the resonant frequency. This is confirmed by the Fourier transform of this response: the resonance peak is detected at 18 kHz.


Fourier Analysis of the resonance at 18.125 KHz of a micro-mirror. Left panel: excitation signal and vertical time response of a point at the surface of the mirror. Right panel: Fourier Analysis of the system response with detection of the resonance peak at 18.250 due to the limited frequency resolution kHz. The first peak is linked with the positive excitation voltage. With an excitation signal centered on zero, it disappears.