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Chapter 3:
Raw Materials for Producing Optical Elements
An optical material is the raw material used to fabricate optical elements that are assembled into optical systems. Those elements are lenses, windows, mirrors, filters, and domes. Optical elements transmit or reflect the electromagnetic radiation in one or more spectral regions: IR, VIS, or UV, as designed and specified in the relevant drawing and/or specification by the optics designer. Optical materials include different kind of glasses, crystals, and plastics. Because some metals (aluminum, for example) are also used to fabricate mirrors, they can be classified for this matter as an optical material.
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