The VIBE™ process is a full-aperture, conformal polishing process incorporating high frequency and random motion
designed to rapidly remove sub-surface damage in a VIBE pre-polish step and eliminate mid-spatial frequency (MSF)
errors in a VIBE finishing step. The VIBE process has potential to be introduced in two areas of today's modern optics
manufacturing process. The first instance is replacing the conventional pre-polishing step with the rapid VIBE pre-polish
step. Results will be discussed in this paper that show 10 - 50x higher removal rates compared to conventional
polishing for a variety of optical materials. High removal rates combined with the compliant lap results in damage-free
surfaces that have the same form that was generated by the CNC generation process for spherical and non-spherical
surfaces. The second potential area to incorporate VIBE into today's modern optics manufacturing process is as a
finishing step after deterministic sub-aperture polishing to remove mid-spatial frequency errors. By selectively altering
the compliant properties of the VIBE pad, and adjusting the frequency of the VIBE motion, VIBE finishing can reduce
the mid-spatial frequencies caused from sub-aperture polishing processes while maintaining the desired corrected surface
form. This paper will serve as an in-depth review of the VIBE process and how it complements other modern CNC
optics manufacturing technologies, as well as highlighting recent VIBE advances specifically in the area of conformal
Hard ceramic conformal windows and domes provide challenges to the optical
fabricator. The material hardness, polycrystalline nature and non-traditional shape demand
creative optical fabrication techniques to produce these types of optics cost-effectively.
VIBETM is a high-speed, high-pressure, conformal optical fabrication process that is capable
of rapidly polishing hard ceramic materials and non-traditional shapes such as toroids and
tangent ogives. This paper will overview the recent progress made to rapidly manufacture
hard ceramic conformal windows and domes as well as the challenges associated with it.
Results will show 10-50x increase in removal rates using the VIBE platform to polish hard
ceramic materials compared to conventional methods.
The concept for polishing optical elements with a process called VIBE is presented. Application to non uniformly sloped optics such as aspheric shapes is detailed. Initial results on spherical surfaces are presented. A few technical challenges to be overcome are outlined.
Opticians have for years kept polishing pitch in electrified containers called "pitch pots" that keeps it in at an elevated temperature. The temperature is adjusted to
achieve the desired pitch viscosity. When pitch is desired, the optician will remove the cover, reach into the pot and scoop out a glob of pitch with his hand. However, without thinking, most opticians will "fold over" or "push aside" the
top layer of pitch to select pitch from deeper in the pot. This paper documents the change in temperature as the distance from the top surface increases. It also shows the effect of insulating the top cover.