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Main image: © iStock, Hakan Yesil Top right: ILCentric. © Innolite GmbH Bottom from left: Structured freeform surface, ultrasonic-assisted diamond turning of steel. © Innolite GmbH Lens assembly. © Innolite GmbH Innovation Center, digital photonic production. © Innolite GmbH
oping procedures to generate, form and use light especially for tools used in industrial processes and production. In comparison to other methods light or laser beams is far more precise and easier to operate. An Innolite machine currently in focus because of its innovative technology is the ILCentric, a compact ultra-precision machine with aerostatic bearings and a perfect centring solution for mounted lenses. Those working with equipment relying on the precise fitting of lenses will know that the performance of complex lens systems relies on the correct position of lenses in the system – in this case speaking about a micrometre range. Normally inaccuracies might occur when lenses are glued or fixed into place and thus later need to be corrected by machining the mounts of the lenses with respect to the optical axis.
great deal of time and often enough one cannot even tell how precise the lens will fit in in the end. The second possibility is using mechanical chucks – here the setup effort is quite high as well.
In cooperation with Opto Alignment Technology, Innolite has developed its novel machine, the ILCentric, for an easier and more precise centre turning operation. ILCentric is able to measure the optical axis and, on basis of the so gained data, it machines the socket that holds the lenses with great precision. The machine replaces the mechanical chucks with computer software supported through highly dynamic axes. In comparison to simple centring lathes, the ILCentric reduces the handling time even further. But the functionality does not stop with the adjustment. ILCentric offers every other functionality of high-precision lathes and is widely applicable and cost effective. Innolite therefore offers a fully automatic solution for centring lenses – effective, precise and fast. ILCentric is not a Prism Awards Finalist for nothing. The machine is only one example for the innovative machinery developed here. Innolite not only offers clients flexible solutions and especially tailored ultraprecise moulds for either plastic injection moulding or hot embossing processes, but upon request also produces small series in their own production hall. www.innolite.de
Solutions for adjusting lenses When not using the innovative ILCentric, there are other, older methods to adjust lenses: One means gluing or fixing in the lenses by hand, which need not only precision, but years of experience. That makes the process quite insecure and requires a Issue 39 | June 2016 | 75