NIIS Optical Design

Optical Components

Here are some photos of some of the optical and components of the NIIS project. The lenses are shown following their manufacture and testing at Optical Solutions Incorporated (OSI The lenses were inspected at Wyoming and test-fitted within their lens mounts (seen in the background) before each mount was sent off for coating with Tufram coating at General Magnaplate ( The lenses and their mounts were then shipped back to OSI for assembly using their precision air-bearing table. The mounted lenses were then returned to Wyoming for mounting within the three lens stacks of NIIS.

corrector element #1
The first corrector element for NIIS. Note the 45-degree chamfer that has been diamond-turned concentric with the optical axis to facilitate mounting.

camera element #1
The first ZnSe element of the camera

Individual Lens Mounts for NIIS
Individual Lens Mounts for NIIS prior to coating with the black, low friction Tufram coating.

Close-up of Lens Mount
Close-up of One of the Lens Mounts. Note the 45-degree chamfers on both the lens mounting surface and on the outer diameter which mate to the lens spacer tubes.

Alignment of Camera Lens #7
Close-up of Camera lens #7 being aligned within the camera lens stack. Note that the stack has been aligned on the rotational table using a dial indicator. Each lens is aligned using a microscope to view the reflected beam of a laser from each lens surface. Each lens is clamped in place when it is aligned with the mechanical axis and the spacer put in place. The next lens is then placed within the stack and the process is repeated. The last lens (not present) is held in place with a compression flange. The compression flange results in all the lens mounts and spacer tubes "floating" within the lens stacks once the alignment screws are removed.

Optical Design of NIIS