Proceedings PaperFine Adjustments for Optical Alignment
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During optical alignment, whether internal to the optical instrument as part of the design, or external as references to other items, some physical movement must occur. This motion can be generated by an energy input of manual, electrical or thermal means. When a fine adjustment is performed during an optical alignment, the resolution, accuracy, repeatability and stability of the procedure enter into the error analysis. Companies do not like to publish information on their error analyses, nor on any details on their original fine adjustment concepts which they have evolved over the years. It is hoped that this article in some way might loosen this situation by allowing the author to expose some of the design considerations that he has come across over the years. Some of the major areas of coverage are these: • Displacement Amplification: The magnification of the fine adjustment to facilitate observation • Influences on the Adjustment: The same type of environmental phenomena affect the individual adjustment that affect the entire optical instrument • Restraining Motion: The problem of making an adjustment and then clamping, thereby causing a misadjustment due to the clamping action • Adjustment Error Budget: The various types of adjustment errors, and their effect on the overall adjustment error budget.