Abstract

High-precision aspherical optics are widely used in modern optical systems with the capability of providing high image quality, but an aspherical surface is more challenging to fabricate because of its more complex shape compared with other surfaces. Ion beam figuring (IBF) provides a highly deterministic technology for ultra-precision fabrication of aspherical surfaces. However, the convergent efficiency and final accuracy are strongly dependent on the original surface state, where the topography and distribution of the surface errors generated during the pre-processing should be taken into account. Consequently, we propose a combined technique that includes magnetorheological finishing, smoothing polishing, and IBF. This technique can effectively control different surface errors during the polishing process, and then rapidly impart nanometer-precision fabrication. Comparative figuring experiments are performed on a parabolic surface, and the original surfaces before IBF are pre-processed by manual polishing and our combined technique, respectively. The results indicate that abundant high-slope and middle-to-high frequency surface errors exist on the surface after conventional polishing, and this surface state limits the final fabrication accuracy. Nevertheless, a smooth surface is prepared by our combined technique and a nanometer-precision aspherical surface is rapidly obtained, which demonstrates the feasibility of our proposed method.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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