Broadband collimator enables diffraction limited measurement
Optical Surfaces has supplied a motorised 155mm aperture UV-VIS-NIR collimator system and interferometric alignment system to the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR).
As Germany’s Space Agency, the German federal government has given DLR responsibility for the forward planning and implementation of the German space programme as well as international representation of Germany’s interests.
Ilse Sebastian, Project Manager at DLR commented: “The primary aims of installing this new system in our class 100,000 clean room will be to enable broad-band diffraction limited imaging for MTF measurement, focusing and geometric calibration of single optics and focal planes, fully integrated camera systems and imaging spectrometers at wavelengths between 230 nm and 2.6 µm.
“Exact positioning of targets at the collimator focus is achieved using x,y,z step motors that deliver movement steps of better than 1 arc second. Thermal sensors incorporated into the body of the collimator will allow us to make measurements immune to operating temperature changes.
“To monitor and verify that the system is consistently in alignment - Optical Surfaces also designed and supplied a software-operated Laser Unequal Pathlength Interferometer (LUPI) system to interface with the collimator system”.
Dr Aris Kouris of Optical Surfaces added: “The DLR project presented us with a series of challenges that required the considerable optomechanical expertise of our design, development and production team to solve.
“The result of our collaboration with DLR has been to produce a motorised broadband (UV to IR) collimator system which is able to make geometrical calibration, focusing and MTF measurements on optics, camera systems and spectrometers with multiple degrees of freedom and unmatched accuracy”.