The ability to adapt to a range of measurement conditions by autonomously configuring software or hardware on-line will be an important attribute of next-generation intelligent sensors. In this paper we review the characteristics of spatial light modulators (SLM) with an emphasis on potential integration into adaptive optical instruments. We focus in particular on one type of SLM, a magneto-optic device based on the Faraday effect. Finally, the integration of the Faraday-effect SLM into a laser diffraction particle sizing instrument giving it some ability to adapt to the measurement context is discussed.

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