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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: James C. Wyant
  • Vol. 45, Iss. 25 — Sep. 1, 2006
  • pp: 6511–6518

Development of a compression molding process for three-dimensional tailored free-form glass optics

Allen Y. Yi, Chunning Huang, Fritz Klocke, Christian Brecher, Guido Pongs, Markus Winterschladen, Axel Demmer, Sven Lange, Thomas Bergs, Michael Merz, and Frank Niehaus  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 45, Issue 25, pp. 6511-6518 (2006)

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Because of the limitation of manufacturing capability, free-form glass optics cannot be produced in a large volume using traditional processes such as grinding, lapping, and polishing. Very recently compression molding of glass optics became a viable manufacturing process for the high-volume production of precision glass optical components. An ultraprecision diamond-turning machine retrofitted with a fast tool servo was used to fabricate a free-form optical mold on a nickel-plated surface. A nonuniform rational B-spline trajectory generator was developed to calculate the computer numerical control machine tool path. A specially formulated glass with low transition temperature ( T g ) was used, since the nickel alloy mold cannot withstand the high temperatures required for regular optical glasses. We describe the details of this process, from optical surface geometry, mold making, molding experiment, to lens measurement.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(160.2750) Materials : Glass and other amorphous materials
(220.1920) Optical design and fabrication : Diamond machining
(220.4610) Optical design and fabrication : Optical fabrication
(240.5770) Optics at surfaces : Roughness

Original Manuscript: December 12, 2005
Revised Manuscript: April 7, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: April 8, 2006

Allen Y. Yi, Chunning Huang, Fritz Klocke, Christian Brecher, Guido Pongs, Markus Winterschladen, Axel Demmer, Sven Lange, Thomas Bergs, Michael Merz, and Frank Niehaus, "Development of a compression molding process for three-dimensional tailored free-form glass optics," Appl. Opt. 45, 6511-6518 (2006)

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