The mission of the Center for Freeform Optics (CeFO) is to advance research and education in the science, engineering, and application of systems based on freeform optics through a dedicated, continuing partnership between industry and academia, leading to economic and performance advantages. CeFO's vision is that compact, affordable, and high-performance optical systems based on freeform optics will be a part of future technologies.
CeFO's international consortium brings together experts in optical theory, design, manufacture, assembly, and testing and measurement. The synergy created by combining these areas of expertise accelerates the development and commercialization of state-of-the-art optical systems. The benefits of freeform optics - new functions, higher performance, reductions in volume and weight - affect a broad range of applications, from consumer technology to high-precision optics for space exploration.
CeFO was created to launch the permanent introduction of freeform surfaces into the manufacturing infrastructure for optical systems worldwide. CeFO is focuses on advances in promising fabrication possibilities, from diamond machining to emerging technologies such as laser polishing and 3D printing. Advances in grinding and computer-controlled polishing, ion beam finishing, and magnetorheological finishing with appropriate control of midspatial frequencies and surface roughness are expected to enable future generations of ultraprecise extreme ultraviolet optics. Freeform optics has the potential to impact a broad wavelength range, from infrared surveillance to extreme ultraviolet lithography.
CeFO provides the synergistic, collaborative working space to bring freeform optical surfaces into the mainstream of optical systems and to broadly educate a powerful, diversified workforce of engineers and scientists.
CeFO's research focuses on freeform optics as an enabling technology in many markets and applications. There are four main research areas: