MPO makes precision plastic optics

Nov. 12, 2008
November 12, 2008--Anyone who needs precision plastic optics manufactured in quantities from a single optic to millions of components now has a new option: Molded Plastic Optics, LLC (MPO; Manchester, NH).

November 12, 2008--Anyone who needs precision plastic optics manufactured in quantities from a single optic to millions of components now has a new option: Molded Plastic Optics, LLC (MPO; Manchester, NH). MPO is a new company set up specifically to design, manufacture and verify the highest precision molded plastic optical components and assemblies. The company has diamond-turning equipment (for creation of molds, as well as low quantities of optics) and robotically controlled molding facilities (for high-volume manufacturing runs) in its 10,000-sq-ft plant.

MPO offers complete one-stop shopping including new product optical design, rapid prototyping, manufacturability optimization, repeatable high-volume molding, custom subassembly of components, and comprehensive testing and verification of all parts, according to the company. MPO's state of the art molding machines are equipped with injection compression to provide the highest optical quality parts possible, and a comprehensive state-of-the-art metrology lab ensures that every part is optimized and meets our customer's specifications every time. As described by Richard Cartier, MPO's president, the company's metrology lab includes a Mitutoyo profilometer that measures lens sag to 0.1 µm, as well as a "high-end" Zygo interferometer.

The company was founded by Cartier and William David Schmidt. Before co-founding MPO, Cartier worked at Insight Technology (Londonderry, NH) for 19 years at various positions, both technical and corporate. Insight designs and makes night-vision and electro-optical systems for the U.S. military and federal law-enforcement agencies, as well as tactical illuminators (weapon-mounted, for example) for use by police and the general public

The manufacturing line's robotic capabilities at MPO will include unloading parts from molds, placing them on the conveyer belt, and getting them ready for coating. Cartier describes the company's goal as a "lights out" automated manufacturing system, in which the only cost is electricity.

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