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Proceedings Paper

Diamond machining of high-purity aluminium alloys
Author(s): Malcolm J. Kent
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Paper Abstract

The manufacture of reflecting components for optical systems by precision diamond machining is well established. Diamond machining is a process in which the tool is a diamond, and the finish produced by the diamond is usually the final finish. Much work has been carried out on the improvement of the stiffness of machines, both lathes and fly-cutting machines, reduction of vibration and the sharpness and shape of the diamond tool. With components of complex curvature the only economic way these can be manufactured is by diamond machining. In many cases low inertia is required and this means that mirrors must be made from a lightweight material such as an aluminium alloy. The machining can proceed at rates of up to a few inches per minute and so the production time can be quite short. It is shown that the surface finish can be limited not by the machining as such but by the presence of intermetallic inclusions. It is thought that these inclusions are inherited from the billet and are carried through to the extruded material. Surfaces machined from such material will produce diffuse scatter and loss of contrast when used in an optical system. The subject of this paper is the improvement of the aluminium alloy from which the reflective components are to be machined.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 October 1990
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 1320, Infrared Technology and Applications, (1 October 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.22341
Show Author Affiliations
Malcolm J. Kent, Royal Signals and Radar Establishment (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1320:
Infrared Technology and Applications
Alan H. Lettington, Editor(s)

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