Recently, freeform surfaces have been widely used in various optical systems because of their high flexibility and ability to correct aberrations when off-axis optical components are considered. Among freeform optics there are the head-up displays (HUDs) for vehicles, HUDs are increasingly used in new vehicles as they keep the driver’s head up and eyes focused on the road for the sake of improved safety. Fora compact size in the limited space of the vehicle, an HUD is typically an off-axis mirror system (including the windshield). The freeform mirror is not only employed to correct the off-axis aberrations caused by the windshield but also is used to provide an optical power for system magnification. This paper focuses on the design, fabrication, and measurement of a freeform mirror developed for a vehicle HUD system. We herewith report the design of the freeform surface including extended its polynomials description and its optimization. Using an ultra-high precision manufacturing and metrology strategy that is based on the use of a multi-axis machining center and advanced nano-metric profiler, the form error of the freeform mirror was precisely controlled according to system requirement. The fabricating method was realized on a machine equipped with a servo tool servo (STS) a and the combination of CXZ coordinates was programmed,. Finally, the freeform surface is fabricated and measured experimentally by ultrahigh accurate 3D profilometer.
The design of the rigid contact lens (CL) with slope-constrained Q-type aspheres for myopia correction is presented in this paper. The spherical CL is the most common type for myopia correction, however the spherical aberration (SA) caused from the pupil dilation in dark leads to the degradation of visual acuity which cannot be corrected by spherical surface. The spherical and aspheric CLs are designed respectively based on Liou’s schematic eye model, and the criterion is the modulation transfer function (MTF) at the frequency of 100 line pair per mm, which corresponds to the normal vision of one arc-minute. After optimization, the MTF of the aspheric design is superior to that of the spherical design, because the aspheric surface corrects the SA for improving the visual acuity in dark. For avoiding the scratch caused from the contact profilometer, the aspheric surface is designed to match the measurability of the interferometer. The Q-type aspheric surface is employed to constrain the root-mean-square (rms) slope of the departure from a best-fit sphere directly, because the fringe density is limited by the interferometer. The maximum sag departure from a best-fit sphere is also controlled according to the measurability of the aspheric stitching interferometer (ASI). The inflection point is removed during optimization for measurability and appearance. In this study, the aspheric CL is successfully designed with Q-type aspheres for the measurability of the interferometer. It not only corrects the myopia but also eliminates the SA for improving the visual acuity in dark based on the schematic eye model.
Traditional optical aluminium grades such as Al 6061 are intensively used for making optical components for applications ranging from mould insert fabrication to laser machine making. However, because of their irregular microstructure and relative inhomogeneity of material properties at micro scale, traditional optical aluminium may exhibit some difficulties when ultra-high precision diamond turned. Inhomogeneity and micro-variation in the material properties combined with uneven and coarse microstructure may cause unacceptable surface finish and accelerated tool wear, especially in grooving operation when the diamond tool edge is fully immersed in the material surface. Recently, new grades of optical aluminium that are featured by their ultra-fine microstructure and improved material properties have been developed to overcome the problem of high tool wear rates. The new aluminium grades have been developed using rapid solidification process which results in extremely small grain sizes combined with improved mechanical properties. The current study is concerned with investigating the performance of single-point diamond turning when grooving two grades of rapidly solidified aluminium (RSA) grades: RSA905 which is a high-alloyed aluminium grade and RSA443 which has a high silicon content. In this study, two series of experiments employed to create radial microgrooves on the two RSA grades. The surface roughness obtained on the groove surface is measured when different combinations of cutting parameters are used. Cutting speed is varied while feed rate and depth of cut were kept constant. The results show that groove surface roughness produced on RSA443 is higher than that obtained on RSA905. Also, the paper reports on the effect of cutting speed on surface roughness for each RSA grade.
Silicon is an optical material widely used in the production of infrared optics. However, silicon as a brittle material exhibits some difficulties when ultra-precision machined by mono-crystalline single point diamond. Finish turning of silicon with mono- crystalline diamond inserts results in accelerated tool wear rates if the right combination of the machining parameters is not properly selected. In this study, we conducted a series of machining tests on an ultra-high precision machine tool using finish turning conditions when using mono-crystalline diamond inserts with negative rake angle and relatively big nose radius. The study yields some recommendations on the best combination of machining parameters that will result in maximum material removal rates with smallest possible surface finish. In this work, standard non-controlled waviness diamond inserts having nose radius of about 1.5 mm, rake angle of negative 25°, and clearance angle of 5° were used to produce flat surfaces on silicon disk. From the results, it has been established that feed rate has the most influential effect followed by the depth of cut and cutting speed.
Ultra-high precision machining is used intensively in the photonics industry for the production of various optical components. Aluminium alloys have proven to be advantageous and are most commonly used over other materials to make various optical components. Recently, the increasing demand from optical systems for optical aluminium with consistent material properties has led to the development of newly modified grades of aluminium alloys produced by rapid solidification in the foundry process. These new aluminium grades are characterised by their finer microstructures and refined mechanical and physical properties. However the machining database of these new optical aluminium grades is limited and more research is still required to investigate their machinability performance when they are diamond turned in ultrahigh precision manufacturing environment. This work investigates the machinability of rapidly solidified aluminium RSA 905 by varying a number of diamond-turning cutting parameters and measuring the surface roughness over a cutting distance of 4 km. The machining parameters varied in this study were the cutting speed, feed rate and depth of cut. The results showed a common trend of decrease in surface roughness with increasing cutting distance. The lowest surface roughness Ra result obtained after 4 km in this study was 3.2 nm. This roughness values was achieved using a cutting speed of 1750 rpm, feed rate of 5 mm/min and depth of cut equal to 25 μm.
Optical aluminium alloys such as 6061-T6 are traditionally used in ultra-high precision manufacturing for making optical mirrors for aerospace and other applications. However, the optics industry has recently witnessed the development of more advanced optical aluminium grades that are capable of addressing some of the issues encountered when turning with single-point natural monocrystalline diamond cutters. The advent of rapidly solidified aluminium (RSA) grades has generally opened up new possibilities for ultra-high precision manufacturing of optical components. In this study, experiments were conducted with single-point diamond cutters on rapidly solidified aluminium RSA 443 material. The objective of this study is to observe the effects of depth of cut and feed rate at a fixed rotational speed on the tool wear rate and resulting surface roughness of diamond turned specimens. This is done to gain further understanding of the rate of wear on the diamond cutters versus the surface texture generated on the RSA 443 material. The diamond machining experiments yielded machined surfaces which are less reflective but with consistent surface roughness values. Cutting tools were observed for wear through scanning microscopy; relatively low wear pattern was evident on the diamond tool edge. The highest tool wear were obtained at higher depth of cut and increased feed rate.
The metal mirror has been widely used in optical application for a longtime. Especially the aluminum 6061 is often considered the preferred material for manufacturing optical components for ground-based astronomical applications. One reason for using this material is its high specific stiffness and excellent thermal properties. However, a large amount of data exists for this material and commercially available aluminum 6061 using single point diamond turning (SPDT) and polishing process can achieve surface roughness values of approximately 2 to 4 nm, which is adequate for applications that involve the infrared spectral range, but not for the shorter spectral range. A novel aluminum material, fabricated using a rapid solidification process that is equivalent to the conventional aluminum 6061 alloy grade has been used in optical applications in recent years because of its smaller grain size. In this study, the surface quality of the rapid solidification aluminum after single point diamond turning and followed by magnetorheological finish (MRF) process is investigated and compared with conventional aluminum 6061. Both the surface roughness Ra was evaluated using white light interferometers. Finally, indicators such as optimal fabrication parameter combination and optical performance are discussed.
Aluminum 6061 is often considered the preferred material for manufacturing optical components for ground-based astronomical applications. One reason for using this material is its high specific stiffness and excellent thermal properties. Moreover, a large amount of data exists for this material and commercially available aluminum 6061 can be diamond turned to achieve surface roughness values of approximately 4 to 8 nm, which is adequate for applications that involve the infrared spectral range, but not for the near-ultraviolet wavelength (NUV) spectral range. In this study, we used a novel aluminum material, fabricated using a rapid solidification process that is equivalent to the conventional aluminum 6061 alloy grade. Using rapidly solidified aluminum (RSA) can achieve improved surface finish and enhanced optical performance. The rapid solidification process was realized using a melt spinning operation, which achieves a high cooling rate to yield a fine microstructure. The properties of RSA 6061 are similar to those of conventional aluminum 6061, but its grain size is extremely small. In this paper, the background of RSA is introduced, and the diamond turnability characteristics and coating processes for both traditional aluminum 6061 and RSA are discussed. The surface roughness and grain structure of RSA were evaluated using white light interferometers and the surface roughness during coating of the reflectance multilayers of samples were analyzed using near-ultraviolet wavelengths. Finally, indicators such as optimal cutting parameters and optical performance are discussed.