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28 November 2007 The National Ignition Facility: the world's largest optical system
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The National Ignition Facility (NIF), a 192-beam fusion laser, is presently under construction at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory with an expected completion in 2008.1-5 The facility contains 7,456 meter-scale optics for amplification, beam steering, vacuum barriers, focusing, polarization rotation, and wavelength conversion.6 A multiphase program was put in place to increase the monthly optical manufacturing rate by up to 20x while simultaneously reducing cost by up to 3x through a sub-scale development, full-scale facilitization, and a pilot production phase. Currently 80% of the optics are complete with over 50% installed. In order to manufacture the high quality optics at desired manufacturing rate of over 100 precision optics per month, new more deterministic advanced fabrication technologies had to be employed over those used to manufacture previous fusion lasers.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Christopher J. Stolz "The National Ignition Facility: the world's largest optical system", Proc. SPIE 6834, Optical Design and Testing III, 683402 (28 November 2007);

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