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11 October 2015 Cost-driven self-consistent fabrication and assembly tolerance classes
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Proceedings Volume 9633, Optifab 2015; 96330U (2015)
Event: SPIE Optifab, 2015, Rochester, New York, United States
At the 1994 International Optics Design Conference, a paper was presented by the author that proposed that optics costs are often driven by the fabrication and assembly tolerances. In addition, that these tolerances fall into groups (classes) that for any given shop are set typically by the capital investment in measurement equipment that the shop has access to. The premise is then that it is essential that the optical system tolerances on fabrication, e.g. radii, element thickness, wedge, surface figure, and surface finish and on assembly e.g. component tilt and decenter and spacer thickness and wedge that are assigned by the optical designer be self-consistent with the capabilities of the shops that are solicited to provide a quotation.

In the 1994 paper, five classes of optical fabricators were identified; catalog, regular, select, premium, and ultimate (lithography). For each of these classes, representative minimum tolerances were published along with estimates of the cost increment. An important concept is that if any one tolerance falls into a tighter class, then the optical system must be built in a shop capitalized to provide that one minimum tolerance and as a result all the other tolerances can typically be moved to the tighter class with little cost impact. The primary cost impact then is driven by the class of shop dictated by the minimum tolerance. In this talk, a primary purpose is to revisit the tolerances associated with a given class of shop and update the numbers to reflect advances in the intervening two decades.
© (2015) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Kevin P. Thompson and Jannick P. Rolland "Cost-driven self-consistent fabrication and assembly tolerance classes", Proc. SPIE 9633, Optifab 2015, 96330U (11 October 2015);


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