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Appl Opt. 2012 Jan 20;51(3):401-7. doi: 10.1364/AO.51.000401.

Shape correction of optical surfaces using plasma chemical vaporization machining with a hemispherical tip electrode.

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Nikon Corporation, 1-10-1 Asamizodai, Sagamiharai, Kanagawa 228-0828, Japan.


We propose a plasma chemical vaporization machining device with a hemispherical tip electrode for optical fabrication. Radio-frequency plasma is generated close to the electrode under atmospheric conditions, and a workpiece is scanned relative to the stationary electrode under three-axis motion control to remove target areas on a workpiece surface. Experimental results demonstrate that surface removal progresses although process gas is not forcibly supplied to the plasma. The correction of shape errors on conventionally polished spheres is performed. As a result, highly accurate smooth surfaces with the desired rms shape accuracy of 3 nm are successfully obtained, which confirms that the device is effective for the fabrication of optics.


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