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Challenges in size scale up of freeform polishing processes
Author(s): Ian Ferralli; Matt Brunelle; Jen Coniglio; Brian Myer; Tim Lynch; Todd Blalock; Jessica DeGroote Nelson
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Paper Abstract

Freeform optical components are gaining popularity with designers due to their ability to improve optical and aerodynamic performance for many applications. The challenges involved with the manufacturing and metrology of these shapes, which have little or no symmetry, has been discussed at previous talks and conferences. This paper will focus on the challenges that Optimax faced as we scaled up our freeform polishing process from parts with approximately 150 mm diameters, to polishing components with diameters over 600 mm. The large format platform, designed, built, and programmed at Optimax, utilizes a pick-and-place style, 6-axis robotic arm for the polishing motion. In order to scale up the platform from our existing robotic polishers, a larger robotic arm was used. The associated challenges include: timing considerations for both the polishing and metrology, obtaining sufficient material removal for reliable measurements, and difficulties modelling robot joint positions for collision prevention. These issues have been investigated and mitigated through proprietary techniques and novel solutions, some of which will be explored in this paper. One such technique currently under development at Optimax is deflectometry; which is a noninterferometric method involving fringe reflection and ray tracing to calculate the mid-spatial frequency (MSF) error on a part surface. Deflectometry is able to measure MSF error two orders of magnitude faster than the current method, and has been implemented in-situ, mitigating another challenges involved with larger freeform optics: the logistics of moving them around a shop floor safely.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 May 2019
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 10985, Window and Dome Technologies and Materials XVI, 109850I (13 May 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2520627
Show Author Affiliations
Ian Ferralli, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Matt Brunelle, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Jen Coniglio, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Brian Myer, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Tim Lynch, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Todd Blalock, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)
Jessica DeGroote Nelson, Optimax Systems, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10985:
Window and Dome Technologies and Materials XVI
W. Howard Poisl, Editor(s)

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