Computer-controlled optical surfacing (CCOS) is an advanced manufacturing technology and a deterministic method for the production of high-precision (HP) optics. Carl Zeiss (CZ) has developed two basic methods for the generation of high accuracy optical surfaces: small-tool computer-controlled polishing (CCP) and ion beam figuring (IBF).
The invention and realisation of magnet or heological finishing (MRF) of QED Inc. in America for the production provided a major stimulus to the progress of the deterministic manufacture of HP optics, and the US took the lead in this area. Since the development and improvement of cost-effective production processes is of crucial significance to worldwide competitiveness, CZ has established a team (CCP team) to work on investigating innovative CCOS.
The CCP team currently consists of experts specialising in various areas, with the exception of mathematical algorithms. It is therefore the intention of this proposal to recruit an expert with a good knowledge of mathematical algorithms and a background in software and manufacturing engineering within the scope of the ToK programme. He/she will be working with the CCP team.
The main aim of the work is to optimise the CZ algorithms using synergy effects by analysing all available algorithms for the CCOS of freeform optics, in particular those for MRF, to integrate CCOS into the overall process and, finally, to extend into the virtual manufacturing of freeform optics using an innovative full-surface tool named the adaptive elastic polishing tool which has yet to be developed.
The results of the fellow's work will help Zeiss to reduce the gap to the US in MRF and directly influence CZ's competence in the cost-efficient manufacture of freeform surfaces.
Achievements in the field of this advanced manufacturing technology will enhance Europe's ability to take the technological lead in, for example, photolithography, and maintain and improve its competitiveness in the field of HP optics.
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