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3 September 2015 Disruptive advancement in precision lens mounting
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Threaded rings are used to fix lenses in a large portion of opto-mechanical assemblies. This is the case for the low cost drop-in approach in which the lenses are dropped into cavities cut into a barrel and clamped with threaded rings. The walls of a cavity are generally used to constrain the lateral and axial position of the lens within the cavity. In general, the drop-in approach is low cost but imposes fundamental limitations especially on the optical performances. On the other hand, active alignment methods provide a high level of centering accuracy but increase the cost of the optical assembly.

This paper first presents a review of the most common lens mounting techniques used to secure and center lenses in optical systems. Advantages and disadvantages of each mounting technique are discussed in terms of precision and cost. Then, the different contributors which affect the centering of a lens when using the drop-in approach, such as the threaded ring, friction, and manufacturing errors, are detailed. Finally, a patent pending lens mounting technique developed at INO that alleviates the drawbacks of the drop-in and the active alignment approaches is introduced. This innovative auto-centering method requires a very low assembly time, does not need tight manufacturing tolerances and offers a very high level of centering accuracy, usually less than 5 μm. Centering test results performed on real optical assemblies are also presented.
© (2015) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Frédéric Lamontagne, Nichola Desnoyers, Michel Doucet, Patrice Côté, Jonny Gauvin, and Geneviève Anctil "Disruptive advancement in precision lens mounting", Proc. SPIE 9582, Optical System Alignment, Tolerancing, and Verification IX, 95820D (3 September 2015);

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