The demand for precise micro-optical elements and subsystems is increasing drastically, influenced mainly by the exploding information and communications markets. For many applications, technologies capable of high-volume production of these elements are needed. Favored methods are replication technologies such as injection molding, hot embossing, or UV molding. The challenge for materials scientists is to synthesize materials that can be formed into micro-optical structures and that can resist extreme environmental conditions during operation and stocking (e.g., temperature changes from −45°C to +125°C).
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