19 October 2012 Precision molding of advanced glass optics: innovative production technology for lens arrays and free form optics
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Today isothermal precision molding of imaging glass optics has become a widely applied and integrated production technology in the optical industry. Especially in consumer electronics (e.g. digital cameras, mobile phones, Blu-ray) a lot of optical systems contain rotationally symmetrical aspherical lenses produced by precision glass molding. But due to higher demands on complexity and miniaturization of optical elements the established process chain for precision glass molding is not sufficient enough. Wafer based molding processes for glass optics manufacturing become more and more interesting for mobile phone applications. Also cylindrical lens arrays can be used in high power laser systems. The usage of unsymmetrical free-form optics allows an increase of efficiency in optical laser systems. Aixtooling is working on different aspects in the fields of mold manufacturing technologies and molding processes for extremely high complex optical components. In terms of array molding technologies, Aixtooling has developed a manufacturing technology for the ultra-precision machining of carbide molds together with European partners. The development covers the machining of multi lens arrays as well as cylindrical lens arrays. The biggest challenge is the molding of complex free-form optics having no symmetrical axis. A comprehensive CAD/CAM data management along the entire process chain is essential to reach high accuracies on the molded lenses. Within a national funded project Aixtooling is working on a consistent data handling procedure in the process chain for precision molding of free-form optics.
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Guido Pongs, Guido Pongs, Bernd Bresseler, Bernd Bresseler, Thomas Bergs, Thomas Bergs, Gert Menke, Gert Menke, } "Precision molding of advanced glass optics: innovative production technology for lens arrays and free form optics", Proc. SPIE 8489, Polymer Optics and Molded Glass Optics: Design, Fabrication, and Materials II, 84890I (19 October 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.930455; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.930455


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