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An optical design space that can highly benefit from the recent developments in metasurfaces is the folded optics architecture where light is confined between reflective surfaces, and the wavefront is controlled at the reflective interfaces. In this manuscript, we introduce the concept of folded metasurface optics by demonstrating a compact spectrometer made from a 1-mm-thick glass slab with a volume of 7 cubic millimeters. The spectrometer has a resolution of -1.2 nm, resolving more than 80 spectral points from 760 to 860 nm. The device is composed of three reflective dielectric metasurfaces, all fabricated in a single lithographic step on one side of a substrate, which simultaneously acts as the propagation space for light. The folded metasystem design can be applied to many optical systems, such as optical signal processors, interferometers, hyperspectral imagers, and computational optical systems, significantly reducing their sizes and increasing their mechanical robustness and potential for integration.
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Faraji-Dana, Mohammad Sadegh; Arbabi, Ehsan; Arbabi, Amir; Kamali, Seyedeh Mahsa; Kwon, Hyounghan; and Faraon, Andrei, "Compact folded metasurface spectrometer" (2018). NATURE COMMUNICATIONS. 1186.