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Proceedings Paper

Design considerations and validation of the MSTAR absolute metrology system
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Paper Abstract

Absolute metrology measures the actual distance between two optical fiducials. A number of methods have been employed, including pulsed time-of-flight, intensity-modulated optical beam, and two-color interferometry. The rms accuracy is currently limited to ~5 microns. Resolving the integer number of wavelengths requires a 1-sigma range accuracy of ~0.1 microns. Closing this gap has a large pay-off: the range (length measurement) accuracy can be increased substantially using the unambiguous optical phase. The MSTAR sensor (Modulation Sideband Technology for Absolute Ranging) is a new system for measuring absolute distance, capable of resolving the integer cycle ambiguity of standard interferometers, and making it possible to measure distance with sub-nanometer accuracy. In this paper, we present recent experiments that use dispersed white light interferometry to independently validate the zero-point of the system. We also describe progress towards reducing the size of optics, and stabilizing the laser wavelength for operation over larger target ranges. MSTAR is a general-purpose tool for conveniently measuring length with much greater accuracy than was previously possible, and has a wide range of possible applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 August 2004
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5531, Interferometry XII: Techniques and Analysis, (2 August 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.560036
Show Author Affiliations
Robert D. Peters, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Oliver P. Lay, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Serge Dubovitsky, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Johan Burger, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Muthu Jeganathan, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5531:
Interferometry XII: Techniques and Analysis
Katherine Creath; Joanna Schmit, Editor(s)

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