21 September 2007 Tolerancing and alignment of a three-mirror off-axis telescope
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When the optical elements of a system are not collinear, there are advantages to aligning all elements simultaneously. This paper presents the steps taken to prepare for system alignment and the alignment plan for such a system. A tolerance analysis of the system defines the compensators necessary for system alignment and allows an estimate of the expected magnitude of initial aberrations present in the system. Polarization and pupil aberrations are characterized in order to further understand expected system aberrations before alignment. A two step alignment plan is outlined. First, a CCD array placed at the focal plane indicates spot size and shape as elements are aligned. Once spot size is minimized, the CCD array is replaced by a ball bearing for retroreflection. Useful interferograms can be obtained with which remaining aberrations can be minimized. This technique is presented as the alignment plan for an off-axis telescope system consisting of one spherical and two ellipsoidal mirrors.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Anna-Britt Mahler, Russell Chipman, "Tolerancing and alignment of a three-mirror off-axis telescope", Proc. SPIE 6676, Optical System Alignment and Tolerancing, 66760I (21 September 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.734958; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.734958


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