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In brief


Microsystems engineering is currently in high demand, both in R&D as much as in industry. Multimedia and medical sciences, in particular, call for highly precise optical devices on the microscopic scale.

Unfortunately, a macroscopic device cannot simply be miniaturized. Any attempt to retain material, design and above all the device's optical functionality, quickly reaches its technical limits. A one-to-one transfer becomes impossible. This is particularly true for conventional setups like axial arrays in camera lenses.

Hence, new concepts are needed for micro-optic imaging as much as for microsystems setups, configurations and actuators.

 What do we mean by 'Active Micro-optics'?

Active micro-optics is distinguished by the fact that all components of an optical microsystem are tunable during operation. This applies to the entire system as much as to the used material and the components (lenses, mirrors and filters).

Once an optical device is adjusted to a measurement or imaging task, the focal length and the size of the image needs to be tunable just as easily. In addition, aperture (the opening of the optical system) as well as object and image distance should remain flexible.


  • established in 2008
  • established for a total of 6 years
  • funding 2011-2014: € 3,7 Mio
  • 15 research groups; 4 joint project clusters




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