January 6, 2006, Barrington, NJ--Edmund Optics has received $2.8 million in U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) ManTech funding for the development of advanced manufacturing tools vital to producing complex conformal and advanced optical elements such as aspheres. Geared primarily at advances in precision glass molding technology, the initial objective will be to create low-cost tooling methods critical to low- and mid-volume lens production runs needed by many DoD programs.
As the program unfolds over the next 2-3 years, the scope will be expanded to include new methods for reducing assembly time of complex optical systems such as high-precision night-vision and fire-control systems.
Edmund Optics in conjunction with the U.S. Army Benet Weapons Lab will manage the project at the Edmund Optics Advanced Optics Manufacturing Facility located in Pennsburg, PA. Design engineering and assembly technologies will be co-developed at the Edmund Optics corporate headquarters in Barrington, NJ and design center in Tucson, AZ.
According to Edmund Optics president John Stack, "Cost-effective implementation of asphere technology has become a major obstacle to increasing performance and reducing weight in a wide variety of DoD programs. The grant will go a long way to solving some long-standing technical and manufacturing hurdles."