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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 50, Iss. 5 — Feb. 10, 2011
  • pp: 755–765

Achromatic athermalized retarder fabrication

Anna-Britt Mahler, Stephen McClain, and Russell Chipman  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 50, Issue 5, pp. 755-765 (2011)

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A method for fabricating an achromatic, athermalized quarter-wave retarder is presented that involves monitoring retardance during polishing. A design specified by thicknesses alone is unlikely to meet specification due to uncertainties in birefringence. This method facilitates successful fabrication to a retardance specification despite these uncertainties. A retarder made from sapphire, MgF 2 , and quartz was designed, fabricated, and its performance validated for the 0.470 to 0.865 μm wavelength region. Its specifications are as follows: at wavebands centered at 0.470, 0.660, and 0.865 μm , the band-averaged retardance should be 90 ° ± 10 ° for all fields and retardance should change less than 0.1 ° for a 1 ° change in temperature. Retarder fabrication accommodated birefringence and thickness uncertainties via the following steps. The first plate was polished to a target thickness. The retardance spectrum of the first plate was then measured and used to determine a retardance target for the second plate. The retardance spectrum of the combined first and second plates was then used to specify a retardance target for the third plate. The retardance spectrum of the three plates in combination was then used to determine when the final thickness of the third plate was reached.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.0280) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Remote sensing and sensors
(120.2130) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Ellipsometry and polarimetry
(120.4610) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Optical fabrication

ToC Category:
Instrumentation, Measurement, and Metrology

Original Manuscript: August 12, 2010
Revised Manuscript: November 9, 2010
Manuscript Accepted: November 16, 2010
Published: February 9, 2011

Anna-Britt Mahler, Stephen McClain, and Russell Chipman, "Achromatic athermalized retarder fabrication," Appl. Opt. 50, 755-765 (2011)

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