7 September 2013 Ultra-high-precision alignment technology for lens manufacturing used for high-end optics
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This article describes the progress in the area of modern centration technology by using digital image processing. This work is motivated by the continuously increasing demand for high-end optics. During the last years the surface lens quality has been continuously improved. Today the image quality is more determined by the manufacturing tolerances for the mechanical interface which is responsible for decenter and tilt of the lenses respectively the subgroups. Some of the aberrations are directly linked to the decenter of the lenses, Coma for example. Hence it is necessary to realize the subgroups with tolerances below lpm. To determine the decenter of a lens an auto collimation telescope is used to image the reflex of the lens surfaces onto a detector, commonly a half covert photodiode. Rotating the lens generates a sinusoidal signal, which is evaluated by a lock-in amplifier to drive two actuators to adjust the alignment chuck. Typical internal reflections caused by stray light for example disturb the current procedure in such a way that it is impossible to get a stable alignment process. Digital image processing allows us to fix these problems with image recognition. We will demonstrate how a modified auto collimation telescope in combination with the developed software algorithms made the manufacturing process more accurate, faster and useable for a broad spectrum of lenses. It has been proofed by some thousand diverse lenses that with these new technique subgroups can be centered within 0.25μm.
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Sebastian Schiffner, Sebastian Schiffner, Thomas Sure, Thomas Sure, "Ultra-high-precision alignment technology for lens manufacturing used for high-end optics", Proc. SPIE 8838, Optical Manufacturing and Testing X, 88380O (7 September 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2023634; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2023634


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