Limiting Spectral Resolution of a Reflection Grating Made via Electron-beam Lithography

Casey T. Deroo, Jared Termini, Fabien Grisé, Randall L. McEntaffer, Benjamin D. Donovan, Chad Eichfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Gratings enable dispersive spectroscopy from the X-ray to the optical, and feature prominently in proposed flagships and SmallSats alike. The exacting performance requirements of these future missions necessitate assessing whether the present state-of-the-art in grating manufacture will limit spectrometer performance. In this work, we manufacture a 1.5 mm thick, 1000 nm period (1000 gr mm-1) flat grating using electron-beam lithography (EBL), a promising lithographic technique for patterning gratings for future astronomical observatories. We assess the limiting spectral resolution of this grating by interferometrically measuring the diffracted wavefronts produced in ± first order. Our measurements show this grating has a performance of at least R ∼ 14,600, and that our assessment is bounded by the error of our interferometric measurement. The impact of EBL stitching error on grating performance is quantified, and a path to measuring the period error of customized, curved gratings is presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number142
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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