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Optical Engineering

Design and analysis of an alignment procedure using computer-generated holograms
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Paper Abstract

A procedure that uses computer-generated holograms (CGHs) to align an optical system’s meters in length with low uncertainty and real-time feedback is presented. The CGHs create simultaneous three-dimensional optical references, which are decoupled from the surfaces of the optics allowing efficient and accurate alignment even for systems that are not well corrected. The CGHs are Fresnel zone plates, where the zero-order reflection sets tilt and the first-diffracted order sets centration. The flexibility of the CGH design can be used to accommodate a wide variety of optical systems and to maximize the sensitivity to misalignments. An error analysis is performed to identify the main sources of uncertainty in the alignment of the CGHs and to calculate the magnitudes in terms of general parameters, so that the total uncertainty for any specific system may be estimated. A system consisting of two CGHs spaced 1 m apart is aligned multiple times and re-measured with an independent test to quantify the alignment uncertainty of the procedure. The calculated and measured alignment uncertainties are consistent with less than 3 μrad of tilt uncertainty and 1.5 μm of centration uncertainty (1σ ).

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 August 2013
PDF: 12 pages
Opt. Eng. 52(8) 084104 doi: 10.1117/1.OE.52.8.084104
Published in: Optical Engineering Volume 52, Issue 8
Show Author Affiliations
Laura E. Coyle, College of Optical Sciences, The Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Matthew B. Dubin, College of Optical Sciences, The Univ. of Arizona (United States)
James H. Burge, College of Optical Sciences, The Univ. of Arizona (United States)


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