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Proceedings Paper

Implications of diamond-turned vs. diamond-ground mold fabrication techniques on precision-molded optics
Author(s): Lou Mertus; Alan Symmons
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Paper Abstract

In recent years, the trend within the molded optics community has been an overall advancement in the capability to diamond grind molds using a variety of grinding techniques. Improvements in grinding equipment, materials and tooling have enabled higher quality ceramic and carbide molds and thereby lenses. Diamond turned molds from ductile metals are still used prevalently throughout the molding industry. Each technology presents a unique set of advantages and disadvantages whether used for precision injection molding of plastic optics or precision glass molding. This paper reviews the manufacturing techniques for each approach and applicable molding process. The advantages and disadvantages of each are compared and analyzed. The subtle differences that exist in optics molded from each technique and the impact they have on the performance in various applications is reviewed. Differences stemming from tooling material properties, material-specific minor defects, as well as cutting and grinding process-induced artifacts are described in detail as well as their influence on the roughness, waviness, and form errors present on the molded surface. A comparison with results between similar surfaces for both diamond grinding and diamond turning is presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 October 2012
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 8489, Polymer Optics and Molded Glass Optics: Design, Fabrication, and Materials II, 848902 (19 October 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.927771
Show Author Affiliations
Lou Mertus, LightPath Technologies, Inc. (United States)
Alan Symmons, LightPath Technologies, Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8489:
Polymer Optics and Molded Glass Optics: Design, Fabrication, and Materials II
David H. Krevor; William S. Beich; Michael P. Schaub; Stefan M. Bäumer, Editor(s)

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