ultra-precision grinding and turning machinery

The combination of the latest ultra-precision grinding and turning machinery as well as 20 years of experience in tool design and construction allow for great flexibility and enable us to manufacture custom optics for highest precision requirements.

Glass molding tools for the production of precision optics often require accuracies in the range of only one tenth of a wavelength (λ/10) which equals a geometrical error of < 100 nm Peak-to-Valley.
Within the same process step, however, a surface roughness in the range of only a few nanometers must be achieved, because in many cases a subsequent polishing of the tool is not possible as it would ruin the geometrical accuracy. This unique kind of accuracy can only be achieved with the help of ultra-precision grinding and turning machines, which are offered by very few companies worldwide. Ultraprecise grinding and turning machines are characterized by a distinct stiffness and straightness of its axes. Using linear motors allows for highest control of the axes.

The production process causes geometrical errors, which can be measured in the machine and automatically corrected accordingly by adjusting the processing program.

We at GD Optics have an Ultra-Precision Machine by Moore Nanotechnology Systems with 5 programmable axes at our disposal. Within the field of ultra-precise grinding and turning, this machine allows for the highest possible flexibility in the production of different optical components.

GD Optics is experienced conducting the following processing methods:

  • Rotational symmetric optics in sizes up to 50 mm with submicrometer accuracy.
  • Non-rotational symmetric freeform optics using slow tool processing
  • Linear structures. Very flat structures with heights in the range of a few micrometers can be achieved, just like larger structures such as cylindrical lenses, for example. Concrete examples are FAC-lenses for the collimation of diode lasers or lenses which generate a line from a Gaussian laser profile (so called Powell lenses).

In order to always achieve highest accuracies, especially during time consuming grinding processes, temperature stability of our ultra-precision machine as well as the of the tool itself, is key. In addition to precisely controlling the room temperature, the inside of the machine is controlled via a separate air shower. We achieve climate control with a deviation < 0.1° C.