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DEVICES OR ARRANGEMENTS, THE OPTICAL OPERATION OF WHICH IS MODIFIED BY CHANGING THE OPTICAL PROPERTIES OF THE MEDIUM OF THE DEVICES OR ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE CONTROL OF THE INTENSITY, COLOUR, PHASE, POLARISATION OR DIRECTION OF LIGHT, e.g. SWITCHING, GATING, MODULATING OR DEMODULATING; TECHNIQUES OR PROCEDURES FOR THE OPERATION THEREOF; FREQUENCY-CHANGING; NON-LINEAR OPTICS; OPTICAL LOGIC ELEMENTS; OPTICAL ANALOGUE/DIGITAL CONVERTERS (optical transfer means between sensing member and indicating or recording part in connection with measuring G01D 5/26 ; devices in which mathematical operations are carried out with optical elements G06E 3/00 , {G06E 3/001} ; electrical signal transmission systems using optical means to convert the input signal G08C 19/36 ; information-recording by electric or magnetic means and reproducing by sensing optical properties G11B 11/00 ; static stores using optical elements G11C 13/04 ; transmission systems employing electromagnetic waves other than radio waves, e.g. light, infra-red radiation, H04B 10/00 ; optical multiplex systems H04J 14/00 ; pictorial communication, e.g. television H04N)
Definition statement
This subclass covers:

Devices, the optical operation of which is modified by changing the optical properties (refraction, birefringence, absorption, nonlinear susceptibility) of the medium of the devices.

The term "optical" applies not only to visible light but also to ultra-violet, infra-red radiations or Terahertz (G02F 1/3534).

The following optical elements are therefore covered, the list being not exhaustive:

  • thermo-optic elements.
  • electro-optic elements.
  • magneto-optic elements.
  • elasto-optic elements.
  • acousto-optic elements.
  • liquid crystal devices.
  • electrochromic elements.
  • electrophoretic elements.
  • non-linear optics, i.e. devices or arrangements in which the electric or magnetic field component of the light beam influences the optical properties of the medium.

Demodulating light: Transferring the modulation of modulated light, i.e. transferring the information from one optical carrier of a first wavelength to a second optical carrier of a second wavelength, insofar these demodulators are based in substantial manner on elements which are provided for under the bullets above.

Optical logic elements: Optical bistable devices, i.e. devices exhibiting two different optical output states for a same optical input value, Optical logic elements, insofar these demodulators are based in substantial manner on elements which are provided for under the bullets above.

Optical analogue/digital converters: Optical bistable devices, i.e. devices exhibiting two different optical output states for a same optical input value, Optical logic elements, insofar these devices are based in substantial manner on elements which are provided for under the bullets above.

Relationship between large subject matter areas

G09F 9/35 covers display having a particular shape and or used for a particular application, mainly for the purpose of advertising.

G09F 9/37 covers displays using movable (rotatable) elements.

References relevant to classification in this subclass
This subclass does not cover:

Investigating or analysing materials by the use of optical means

Devices with movable or deformable element (DMD; electro-wetting)

Control arrangements or circuits for visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes

Photoconductive antenna for Terahertz (US2011080329)

Optical Transmission system

Optical multiplex system

Examples of places where the subject matter of this subclass is covered when specially adapted, used for a particular purpose, or incorporated in a larger system:

Projection devices for colour picture display

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Devices in which mathematical operation are carried out with optical elements Optical processing (correlator)

Indicating arrangements for variable information by selection or combination of individual elements

Information-recording and reproducing by sensing optical properties

Control of light sources

Devices or arrangements for the control of the intensity, colour, phase, polarisation or direction of light arriving from an independent light source, e.g. switching, gating, or modulating; Non-linear optics (thermometers using change of colour or translucency G01K 11/12 ; using changes in fluorescence G01K 11/32 ; light guide devices G02B 6/00 ; optical devices or arrangements using movable or deformable elements for controlling light independent of the light source G02B 26/00 ; control of light in general G05D 25/00 ; visible signalling systems G08B 5/00 ; indicating arrangements for variable information by selection or combination of individual elements G09F 9/00 ; control arrangements or circuits for visual indicators other than cathode-ray tubes G09G 3/00 ; control of light sources H01S 3/10 , H05B 33/08 , H05B 35/00 to H05B 43/00 ; { photochromic filters G02B 5/23 ; optical logic elements G02F 3/00})
Definition statement
This group covers:

Devices and methods for the control of intensity, phase, polarisation (G02F 1/01); or direction of light (G02F 1/29).

Devices and methods using nonlinear optical effect (G02F 1/35)

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Light sources (Laser, LED, Lamp) are classified in the appropriate entries

References relevant to classification in this group
This group does not cover:

Photo luminescent material

Liquid crystal material

Electrochromic material

Integrated optical device with other passive /active optical elements (photonic chip)

Digital stores characterised by the use of electro-optical storage elements

Special rules of classification within this group

The class G02F 1/00 is mainly empty and consists only of materials (except nonlinear materials classified in G02F 1/355) insofar these materials are used in the devices provided for in this subclass.

{Materials therefor}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

NNew materials or compositions used in light modulation devices as far as the physical properties are concerned.

References relevant to classification in this group
This subgroup does not cover:

Photoluminescent materials

Liquid crystal materials

Electrochromic materials

Non linear materials

Thermometer using change of colour or translucency

Radiation pyrometry

for the control of the intensity, phase, polarisation or colour (G02F 1/29 , G02F 1/35 take precedence; polarising elements per se G02B 5/30 ; static storage per se G11C; image tube screens acting as light valves by shutter operation H01J 29/12 ; such screens acting by discoloration H01J 29/14 ; { projection arrangements for television image reproduction, e.g. using eidophor H04N 5/74 ; recording by light G11B 7/00 to G11B 11/00})
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Devices and methods for modulating the light (intensity, phase, polarization, color).

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Passive optical element (Color filter, polarizer): G02B

Backlight comprising a light guide: G02B 6/00

Integrated optical element G02B 6/00

Laser: H01S

References relevant to classification in this group
This subgroup does not cover:

Lighting Device in general

F21H to F21V

Measuring Instruments characterised by the use of an interferometer

Measuring characteristics of light, e.g. intensity, spectrum

Measuring force or stress by measuring variations of optical properties of material

Holography

Optical transmission system

Examples of places where the subject matter of this group is covered when specially adapted, used for a particular purpose, or incorporated in a larger system:

Eye protecting filters (Welding Helmet)

Rear-view mirrors

(smart) Windows with controllable transmission

Optical RF spectrum analyser

Head-up display

Electro-optic spectacle (sunglasses)

Constructional details related to the housing of computer displays, e.g. of of flat displays

Transparent conductive material TCO

Thin film Transistor TFT

LED Display

Stereoscopy

Detail of television receiver

Electroluminescent Display

Passive optical element (colour filter, polariser)

Backlight comprising a light guide

Integrated optical element

Arrangements in which the information is build-up by the combination of elements

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Integrated display and digitiser

Active matrix with TFT

Special rules of classification within this subclass/group

Common features of devices or arrangements for the control of intensity, phase, polarization or colour classified in G02F 1/167 (based on electrophoresis) are also classified in the G02F 1/13 and subgroups

Glossary of terms
In this subgroup, the following terms (or expressions) are used with the meaning indicated:

BLU

Backlight Unit

TFT

Thin film transistor

Synonyms and Keywords

In patent documents the following expressions/words are often used as abbreviations:

SOP

State Of Polarization

PDLC

Polymer dispersed Liquid crystal

TCO

Transparent conductive oxide

EA

Electro Absorption

VOA

Variable Optical Attenuator

{based on electro-mechanical, magneto-mechanical, elasto-optic effects}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Devices where a (electro, magnetic, pressure) field produce a deformation of the structure of the material which result in change in refractive index, absorption etc, e.g. elasto-optic effect (mechanically, stress induced birefringence).

{based on thermo-optic effects (G02F 1/132 takes precedence; tenebrescent compositions C09K 9/00 ; radiation pyrometry G01J 5/00 ; thermometers using change of colour or translucency G01K 11/12)}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Thermo optic effect.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Thermal activation of liquid crystals exhibiting a thermo-optic effect

Tenebrescent materials

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Thermometers using change of colour or translucency

Radiation pyrometry

based on semiconductor elements with at least one potential jump barrier, e.g. PN, PIN junction (G02F 1/03 takes precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Mainly GaAs InP devices.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Based on ceramics or electro-optical crystals, e.g. exhibiting Pockels effects or Kerr effect

in an optical waveguide structure (G02F 1/017 , {G02F 1/2257}take precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Using silicon as the electro-optical material for the waveguide.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Structure with periodic or quasi peridoic potential variation, e.g. superlattices, quantum wells

Optical waveguides made of semiconductor material

based on ceramics or electro-optical crystals, e.g. exhibiting Pockels effect or Kerr effect (G02F 1/061 takes precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Device using insulating electro-optic crystals, e.g. made of LiNbO3, LiTtaO3, KTP material

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Based on electro-optical organic material

{structurally associated with a photoconductive layer or having photo-refractive properties (G02F 1/05 takes precedence)}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Photo-refractive effect.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Wuth ferro-electric properties

with ferro-electric properties (G02F 1/035 , G02F 1/055 take precedence; { domain inversion in ferro-electric materials G02F 1/3558 ; ferro-electric digital stores G11C 11/22})
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

G02F 1/055 covers device using PLZT ceramic material.

Obsolete technology.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Ceramics or electro-optical crystals, e.g. exhibiting Pockels effect or Kerr effect in an optical waveguide structure

The active material being a ceramic

Domain inversion on ferro-electric materials

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Ferro-electric digital stores

the active material being a ceramic (G02F 1/035 takes precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Covers device using PLZT ceramic material.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

In an optical waveguide structure

based on electro-optical liquids exhibiting Kerr effect
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Obsolete technology

based on magneto-optical elements, e.g. exhibiting Faraday effect
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Magneto-optic effect

based on acousto-optical elements, e.g. using variable diffraction by sound or like mechanical waves ({elasto-optic effect without wave propagation G02F 1/0131 ; } acousto-optical deflection G02F 1/33)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Acousto-optic

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Elasto-optic effect without wave propagation

Acousto-optical deflection

based on liquid crystals, e.g. single liquid crystal display cells (liquid crystal materials C09K 19/00)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Liquid crystal.

Groups in G02F 1/13 are also used to classify common devices features in electrochromic and Electrophoretic device (see for example US2007024954, US20100137569)

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Control arrangement and circuits for Liquid crystal device

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Liquid crystal materials

{specially adapted for a particular application}
Special rules of classification within this subclass/group

Not used anymore for classifying new documents.

Structural association of optical devices, e.g. polarisers, reflectors or illuminating devices, with the cell
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Integration of optical elements with the LCD panel.

Relationship between large subject matter areas

When the invention concerns the optical elements (for example polarizers) themselves and the incorporation in an LCD is trivial then they should only be classified the in G02B.

Side illuminated LCD backlights employing a waveguide should be classified in G02B 6/00.

If the invention is to be used in the field of lighting (for example luminaire, with waveguide and LEDs) then F21V should also be considered

{Direct backlight}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Pattern of LEDs in an array in a direct type (i.e. without waveguide) LCD back light device.

{Edge-illuminating devices, i.e. illuminating from the side (G02B 6/0001 takes precedence)}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Backlight light employing side illumination without a waveguide.

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Where the invention concerns the waveguide (or plurality of waveguides) shape or integrationinto the support structure on the LCD device then it should be classified in the G02B 6/001 and subgroups.

If the integration of the waveguide type side illuminated backlight involves adaptation of the general LCD panel support structure then G02F 1/133308 and its subgroups should be considered

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Light guides specially adapted for lighting devices or systems

Conductors connecting electrodes to cell terminals
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Details of the connection terminals of the LCD.

See for example US2011116028, US2011075089, US2010321624

{Conductors connecting driver circuitry and terminals of panels (H01L 21/00 takes precedence; electrical details inside the cell G02F 1/133 ;)}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Detail of the connection of the IC driver or PCB with the terminal pads of the LCD.

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Further details of the PCB (printed circuit board) are in H05K. Further details concerning bonding of the drivers are in H01L 21/00 (see for example US2011108979).

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Processes or apparatus adapted for the manufacture or treatment of semiconductor or solid state devices or parts thereof

Constructional arrangements; operation of liquid crystal cells; circuit arrangements

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Drivers integrated with an active matrix

TAB tape automated bonding. COB chip-on-board. COG chip-on-glass.

based on electrochromic elements{(electrochromic materials C09K 9/00)}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Electrochromic.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Electrochromic materials

Special rules of classification within this subclass/group

Common devices features are also classified in G02F 1/13 and subgroups

{based on electrolytic deposition of a non-organic material on or in the vicinity of an electrode}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Electroplating RED (Reversible electrodeposition device).

based on electrophoresis
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Electrophoretic

based on variable absorption elements (G02F 1/015 to G02F 1/167 take precedence; { tenebrescent compositions C09K 9/00})
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Variable absorption device

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Based on semiconductor elements with at least one potential jump barrier e.g. PN, PIN junction

Based on ceramics or electro-optical crystals e.g. exhibiting Pockets effect or Kerr effect

Based on electro-optical organic material

Based on electro-optical liquids exhibiting Kerr effect

Based on magneto-optical elements, e.g. exhibiting Faraday effect

Based on acousto-optical elements e.g. using variable diffraction by sound or like mechanical waves

Based on liquid crystals, e.g. single liquid crystal display cells

Based on electrochromic elements

Based on electrophoresis

Organic tenebrescent materials

{based on a suspension of orientable dipolar particles, e.g. suspended particles displays}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Suspended Particle Display

based on variable reflection or refraction elements (G02F 1/015 to G02F 1/167 take precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Variable reflection device (switchable mirror using metal hydride)

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

For the control of the intensity, phase, polarization or colour...

Constructional details

in optical waveguides

Operation of the device; Circuit arrangement not otherwise provided for

by another light beam, i.e. opto-optical modulation

based on electro-mechanical, magneto-mechanical, elasto-optic effects

for the control of polarisation, e.g. state of polarisation (SOP) control, polarisation

based on thermo-optic effects

based on semiconductor elements with at least one potential jump barrier, e.g. PN, PIN junction

based on ceramics or electro-optical crystals, e.g. exhibiting Pockels effect or Kerr effect

based on electro-optical organic material

based on electro-optical liquids exhibiting Kerr effect

based on magneto-optical elements, e.g. exhibiting Faraday effect

based on acousto-optical elements, e.g. using variable diffraction by sound or like mechanical waves

based on liquid crystals, e.g. single liquid crystal display cells

based on electrochromic elements

based on electrophoresis

for the control of the colour (G02F 1/03 to G02F 1/21 take precedence)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Obsolete technologies

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Led associated with phosphor for the control of the colour of the emitted light are classified in H05B 33/00, F21K 99/00, C09K 11/00; H01L 33/00 (US2008007172)

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Based on ceramic or electro-optical crystals, e.g. exhibiting Pockels effect or Kerr effect

for the control of the position or the direction of light beams, i.e deflection ({optical coupling means G02B 6/26 ; optical-mechanical scanning in general G02B 26/10} ; static stores with electric or magnetic read-in and optical read-out G11C; lasers provided with means to change the location from which, or the direction in which, laser radiation is emitted H01S 3/101)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Devices and methods for the the control or direction (deflection) of light

  • deflection of a light beam that can be spanned over a discrete number (digital) of positions, as opposed to deflection spanned over a continuous range (analog) of positions.

Analog scanner US2008112042 (Electro-optic beam steering) electro active lens US2010226000.

Deflection based on total internal reflection (TIR), producing a yes/no deflection, which is covered by group G02F 1/315.

Relationship between large subject matter areas

Wavelength multiplexer/demultiplexer are classified in G02B 6/12007 for the optical details and in H04Q 11/0001 H04J 14/02 for the control details.

References relevant to classification in this group
This subgroup does not cover:

Optical coupling means

Scanning systems

Static stores

Lasers provided with means to change the location from which, or the direction in which, laser radiation is emitted

Working and shaping a Laser beam

Scanning arrangement

Examples of places where the subject matter of this group is covered when specially adapted, used for a particular purpose, or incorporated in a larger system:

Working and shaping a Laser beam

Scanning arrangement

Optical switching system

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Optical beam shaping, splitting, combining

Non-linear optics (optical bistable devices G02F 3/02 ; lasers using stimulated Brillouin or Raman effect H01S 3/30)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Devices and methods using nonlinear optical processes.

Frequency conversion; Harmonic generation.

Wave mixing.

Optical rectification.

Optical KERR effect.

Self de or /focusing.

Self phase modulation (Soliton propagation).

Cross phase modulation.

nonlinear absorption (optical limiter).

Optical phase conjugation.

Parametric amplification.

References relevant to classification in this group
This subgroup does not cover:

Optical bistable devices

Brillouin, Raman laser

Photoconductive Terahertz emitter (antenna) (Auston switch)

Examples of places where the subject matter of this group is covered when specially adapted, used for a particular purpose, or incorporated in a larger system:

Analysing materials by the use of optical means and of the non-linear properties of the material

Demodulating light; Transferring the modulation of modulated light; Frequency-changing of light (G02F 1/35 takes precedence; photoelectric detecting or measuring devices G01J, H01J 40/00 , H01L 31/00 ; demodulating laser arrangements {e.g. switching, gating}H01S 3/10 ; demodulation or transference of modulation of modulated electro-magnetic waves in general H03D 9/00)
Definition statement
This group covers:

Demodulating light; Transferring the modulation of modulated light.

Frequency-changing of light, e.g. by quantum counters Up-converter Infrared to visible converter, Down converter.

Frequency-changing of light using nonlinear optical effect G02F 1/35 takes precedence.

References relevant to classification in this group
This group does not cover:

Non linear optics

Photoelectric discharge tubes not involving the ionisation of a gas

Semiconductor devices sensitive to infra-red radiation, light, electromagnetic radiation of shorter wavelength or corpuscular radiation and adapted either for the conversion of the energy of such radiation into electrical energy or for the control of electrical energy by such radiation; processes or apparatus peculiar to the manufacture or treatment thereof or of parts thereof; details thereof

Controlling the intensity, frequency, phase, polarisation or direction or the emitted radiation (of lasers) e.g. switching, gating, modulating or demodulating

Measuring optical wavelength

Measuring optical phase difference

Examples of places where the subject matter of this group is covered when specially adapted, used for a particular purpose, or incorporated in a larger system:

Optical receiver/ transmitter

Optical clock arrangement for synchronisation

Optical demodulator for modulated carrier

Millimeter wave (RF) generation using optical means (Radio over Fiber system)

Demodulator for optical sensor

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Pulse train generation using laser

RF synthesysizer

Phase antenna array (US 5859611)

{Transferring the modulation of modulated light, i.e. transferring the information from one optical carrier of a first wavelength to a second optical carrier of a second wavelength, e.g. all-optical wavelength converter}
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Wavelength converter used to convert the carrier of high-bit-rate data from one wavelength to another

Frequency-changing of light, e.g. by quantum counters (luminescent materials C09K 11/00)
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Frequency-changing of light, e.g. by quantum counters.

Obsolete technology.

References relevant to classification in this subclass/group
This subgroup does not cover:

Luminescent, e.g. electroluminescent, chemiluminescent materials

Optical logic elements ({optical computing G06E} ; electric pulse generators using opto-electronic devices as active elements H03K 3/42 ; logic circuits using opto-electronic devices H03K 19/14); Optical bistable devices
Definition statement
This group covers:

Optical logic elements, i.e. optical basic logic gates, e.g. AND, OR, NAND.

Optical bistable devices i.e. devices exhibiting two different optical output states for a same optical input value.

This group is not active.

References relevant to classification in this group
This group does not cover:

Optical computing

Electric-pulse generators using opto-electronic devices as active elements

Logic circuits using opto-electronic devices

Optical bistable devices
Definition statement
This subgroup covers:

Obsolete technology.

Optical analogue/digital converters
Definition statement
This group covers:

Optical analogue/digital converters

This group covers only converters based in substantial manner on elements which are provided for in group G02F 1/00.

Informative references
Attention is drawn to the following places, which may be of interest for search:

Conversion of a code using opto-electronic devices

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Last Modified: 10/11/2013