The optical fabrication industry has been seeking cost effective methods of fabricating glass optics that avoid the centuries old labor-intensive traditional grinding and polishing processes. Traditional techniques are not predictable enough and as a result, optical fabricators resort to time consuming trial and error approaches.
This invention proposes to use laser induced melting/softening to locally reshape the form of a glass optic. The local glass densification that results induces predictable stresses that through plate deformation mechanics yield a deterministic methodology for arbitrarily reshaping an optic surface figure and wavefront without the need to remove material.
The principal advantages of this invention are:
- Deterministic methodology for arbitrarily reshaping glass optics.
- Ability to reshape spherical, planar, or other arbitrary shaped glass optics.
- Ability to correct arbitrary optic surface figure and wavefront aberrations.
- Ability to reshape an optic without removing material.
- Low cost and less time consuming than traditional optical finishing techniques.
- Reshaping spherical, planar, or other arbitrary shaped glass optics.
- Correcting arbitrary optic surface figure and wavefront aberrations.
- Reshape an optic without removing material.
Current stage of technology development: TRL 4-5
LLNL has filed for patent protection on this invention.
US Patent Application No. 2022/0176495 System and Method for Radius of Curvature Modification of Optical Plates and Lenses by Irradiation with Optical Energy published 06/09/2022