MRF™ polishing, exclusively available from QED, is flexible and fast, reliable and accurate. With an MRF machine on your shop floor, you can polish optical surfaces to pristine form, figure, and finish, regardless of symmetry, geometry, or slope variation. Our family of MRF systems offers many advantages that eliminate the inherent problems of classical polishing.
Polish Smarter. Polish Better.
MRF polishing brings more capability and flexibility to precision optics polishing.
Advantages of MRF
MRF brings precision, determinism and repeatability to precision optics manufacturing.
- Provides a completely deterministic process that can be characterized to very high precision
- Conforms to complex surfaces, providing the flexibility to polish aspheric and full freeform shapes
- Reduces cycle times due to its high rate of removal
- Maintains process stability
- Provides a system for precision optics manufacturing that broadens design options and enhances cost effectiveness
- Polishes spherical lenses, aspheric lenses, prisms, freeforms and more.
Produce Better Optics Faster.
QED's MRF computer-controlled polishing systems deterministically produce better high-precision optics.
Unparalleled Accuracy & Repeatability
- High-precision surfaces (lambda/50)
- Correction of transmitted wavefront (windows, phase plates, entire system correction on one surface)
- Optical glasses, single crystals (calcium fluoride, silicon…) and ceramics
- Square and rectangular aperture surfaces such as prisms, cylinders, and photoblank substrates
- Mild & wild aspheres, cylinders and freeforms
- High-aspect-ratio optics and substrates (thin film filters, etalon substrates, semiconductor wafers etc.)
MRF does what many people in the optics business used to consider impossible.
- Polishes spherical, aspherical, freeform, cylindrical or any other mathematically defined shape
- Addresses thickness uniformity (important for silicon-on-insulator semiconductor wafer applications) or optical thickness
MRF can also improve the surface integrity by:
- Removing micro-cracks and subsurface damage
- Removing residual stresses
- Improving glass resistance to laser damage
How MRF Works
The MR fluid is a magnetically-sensitive (magnetorheological) “smart fluid” that changes viscosity in milliseconds when exposed to a magnetic field.
How MRF Works
Watch this animation showing how MRF works.
The magnetic field creates a stiff structure of iron particles that forces water and abrasives to the top in a thin layer. A converging gap is created. Cores are formed, creating a sheared layer of fluid. Pressure gradients result and high-velocity, shear-based removal is created.
A workpiece is installed at a fixed distance from a moving spherical wheel. An electromagnet located below the wheel surface generates a magnetic field in the gap between the wheel and workpiece. When the MR fluid is delivered to the wheel, it is pulled against the wheel surface by the magnetic field and the act of plunging the workpiece into the ribbon of MR fluid creates a subaperture polishing tool otherwise known as a “spot”. A sophisticated computer program determines a schedule for varying the position of the workpiece as it sweeps through the polishing zone, in either a rotational or raster path.
A computer numerical controlled, precision workstation, and sophisticated computer algorithms help ensure that the MRF polishing system is automated and robust. An easy-to-use touchscreen interface guides the operator through every step of the automated process. Stability, predictability and repeatability characterize every MRF polishing cycle.
INTUITIVE AND EASY-TO-USE
- Optical surface errors are fully characterized on an interferometer and transferred to the MRF system.
- User-friendly software calculates the optimal toolpath required to correct the surface errors.
- Pre-run setup is verified with an integrated simulation.
- Progress is monitored real time during polishing.
- Advanced analysis features evaluate final results.
The Q-flex 100 brings more capability and efficiency to any optics shop, from prototypes to volume production.Learn More
The Q-flex 300 brings more capability and efficiency to any optics shop, from prototypes to volume production.Learn More
The Q22-600 presents more options for polishing large-aperture precision optics.Learn More
A large-aperture MRF machine, the Q22-750P2 extends MRF figuring capability to large, long radius parts.Learn More