Gold Coating for Laser Collimator
Understanding specifications and environmental requirements is critical when coating large scale optical components. So when a customer came to EMF unsure of the exact specifications for a gold coating of their large laser collimator, EMF was ready to put their expertise to work.
Why Collimate a Telescope Mirror?
Collimation refers to all the optical elements in an instrument being on their designed optical axis. It also refers to the process of adjusting an optical instrument so that all its elements are on that designed axis (in line and parallel). With regards to a telescope, collimation refers to the fact that the optical axis of each optical component should be centered and parallel, such that collimated light emerges from the eyepiece. Most amateur reflector telescopes need to be re-collimated every few years to maintain optimum performance. This can be done by simple visual methods, such as looking down the optical assembly with no eyepiece to make sure the components are lined up. However, collimating a large telescope requires special, very precise equipment.
EMF’s Gold Coating
EMF’s engineering team discussed the application and environmental requirements for the component with the customer at length. The team’s expertise helped the customer narrow down their options and ensured the end product would meet the customer’s requirements and qualifications. Once the optimal characteristics for the laser collimator were finalized, EMF’s engineers and coating experts got to work.
At the time it was delivered, it was the largest gold coated optical component that EMF had coated in its history! Being able to assist the customer in developing the requirements, and delivering a coating that exceeded those requirements, was possible because of the willingness of EMF’s engineering team to collaborate and listen and their 80+ years of optical coating expertise.