When it comes down to nuts and bolts, these devices are not as simple as the colloquial term may imply. The opto-structural analyst is concerned about maintaining proper preload to prevent loosening, gapping, overtightening, fatigue, strength failure, stripping, seizing, and the like during both assembly and severe operational and non-operational environments. Proper analysis is crucial to optical performance. If properly designed, a good bolt that did not fail during initial tightening should never fail. When failure does occur, a bolt will generally fail in the threads under tension or shear if overloaded.
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