Keynote Address

The Role of Precision Mechanics in Optical Metrology

Dr. Jim H. Burge, President Arizona Optical Metrology LLC

Monday, March 6, 2023 at 9:00AM

Canyon Room, Westward Look

The form requirements for optical surfaces are often expressed in small fractions of the wavelength of light, yet the parts themselves will have mechanical tolerances that are orders of magnitude looser, expressed in thousandths of an inch. This disparity is possible for optics with a high degree of symmetry, and for optical systems that use in situ adjustment of the components during assembly. But a new generation of optical systems can be made higher quality yet smaller and lighter by capitalizing on advancement in manufacturing of optics with freeform shape. Such systems have tighter assembly tolerances and include additional degrees of freedom that can be challenging to align. The key step for achieving both accuracy and efficiency is the use of well-defined datum features on the components that are common to component manufacture, testing, and final assembly. This talk discusses the challenges, advantages, and practical solutions for tightly controlling the mechanical features of optical parts so they can be simply and accurately assembled into complex optical systems.

Dr. Burge is President of Arizona Optical Metrology, a Tucson based company that manufactures computer generated holograms for measuring optical surfaces and components, and Professor Emeritus of Optics and Astronomy at University of Arizona. Dr. Burge has PhD in Optics from University of Arizona and BS in Engineering Physics from Ohio State University.