[en] We propose a new family of achromatic phase shifters for infrared nulling interferometry. These key optical components can be seen as optimized Fresnel rhombs, using the total internal reflection phenomenon, modulated or not. The total internal reflection indeed comes with a phase shift between the polarization components of the incident light. We propose a solution to implement this vectorial phase shift between interferometer arms to provide the destructive interference process needed to disentangle highly contrasted objects from one another. We also show that, modulating the index transition at the total internal reflection interface allows compensating for the intrinsic material dispersion in order to make the subsequent phase shift achromatic over especially broad bands. The modulation can be induced by a thin film of a well-chosen material or a subwavelength grating whose structural parameters are thoroughly optimized. We present results from theoretical simulations! together with preliminary fabrication outcomes and measurements for a prototype in Zinc Selenide.
This paper was published in [Optics Express ] and is made available as an electronic reprint with the permission of OSA. The paper can be found at the following URL on the OSA website: [http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?uri=oe-15-20-12850]. Systematic or multiple reproduction or distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.