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14 May 2007 Advances in the production of freeform optical surfaces
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Recent market demands for free-form optics have challenged the industry to find new methods and techniques to manufacture free-form optical surfaces with a high level of accuracy and reliability. Production techniques are becoming a mix of multi-axis single point diamond machining centers or deterministic ultra precision grinding centers coupled with capable measurement systems to accomplish the task. It has been determined that a complex software tool is required to seamlessly integrate all aspects of the manufacturing process chain. Advances in computational power and improved performance of computer controlled precision machinery have driven the use of such software programs to measure, visualize, analyze, produce and re-validate the 3D free-form design thus making the process of manufacturing such complex surfaces a viable task. Consolidation of the entire production cycle in a comprehensive software tool that can interact with all systems in design, production and measurement phase will enable manufacturers to solve these complex challenges providing improved product quality, simplified processes, and enhanced performance. The work being presented describes the latest advancements in developing such software package for the entire fabrication process chain for aspheric and free-form shapes. It applies a rational B-spline based kernel to transform an optical design in the form of parametrical definition (optical equation), standard CAD format, or a cloud of points to a central format that drives the simulation. This software tool creates a closed loop for the fabrication process chain. It integrates surface analysis and compensation, tool path generation, and measurement analysis in one package.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Yazid E. Tohme and Suneet S. Luniya "Advances in the production of freeform optical surfaces", Proc. SPIE 10316, Optifab 2007: Technical Digest, 1031612 (14 May 2007);

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