Expedited Fabrication of Conformal Window for ABL
Agency / Branch:
DOD / MDA
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project Expedited Fabrication of Conformal Window for Airborne Laser (ABL) aims to demonstrate the feasibility of ductile mode machining (DMM) to dramatically reduce manufacturing cycle times of meter-class lightweight mirrors. DMM will drive fabrication times to less than 6 months by reducing/eliminating grinding, lapping and polishing for the ABL 1.8 meter conformal window. DMM will produce higher quality parts by reducing surface roughness RMS to the range of 10-50 nanometers and reduce or eliminate subsurface damage and consequently, increase manufacturing yields. Advanced process computer-aided modeling of DMM will facilitate prediction of beneficial DMM conditions. The DMM development plan proposes three technology objectives: (1) demonstration of a scalable DMM process by fabrication of a 6-inch prototype mirror, (2) demonstration of scalability of the DMM process to a 1.8m, 10m radius of curvature, ABL conformal window, and (3) rigorous economic analysis of cost and schedule to quantify value to ABL program. The anticipated results include the development and demonstration of a robust DMM process for prototyping and fabrication of large optical components and the associated predictive capability to extend DMM to other brittle material machining applications.
Small Business Information at Submission:
THIRD WAVE SYSTEMS, INC.
7900 West 78th St., Suite 250 Minneapolis, MN 55439
Number of Employees: