• Photograph Courtesy of Karen Bridges

    Corner Cube
  • Truncated Corner Cube Prism Inspection

    Corner Cube
  • Truncated Corner Cube Prism In-Process

    Retroreflector
  • Various Corner Cube Sizes and Shapes

    Hollow Retroreflector
  • Hollow Corner Cube

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Corner Cube Retroreflector

Typical Specifications

  • Material: N-BK7, Fused Silica, Custom
  • Sizes: 3mm to 200mm
  • Dimensions: ± 0.010mm to ± 0.25mm
  • Clear Aperture Types: circular, square, custom
  • Clear Aperture Sizes: up to 90% of edge dimension / surface area (typical)
  • Clear Apertures Include: sharp roof edges when applicable
  • Roof Edge Chips: < 0.02mm to < 0.12mm
  • Surface Quality: Per MIL-PRF-13830_B; ANSI/OEOSC OP1.002-2009; ISO 10110
  • Bevels: 0.20mm – 0.50mm face width or custom
  • Surface Flatness: λ/40 – λ/8
  • Transmitted Wavefront:
    • λ/20 for truncated cubes
    • λ/10 for full apertures across roof edges
  • Angles / Deviation: sub arc second / < 1 arc second to < 1 arc minute
  • Coatings: Laser line anti-reflection, broadband anti-reflection, protected metal and dielectric reflecting coatings

A corner cube, also known as a retroreflector, is an optical component with the unique ability to return an incoming beam of light directly towards its point of origin regardless of the beam’s angle of entry. This property makes this prism type ideal for a wide variety of applications, such as laser resonator cavities, land surveying, ground based range-finding, satellite communications and space vehicle docking.

With over 50 years of experience, Precision Optical is the industry leader in manufacturing retroreflectors of many varieties, including:

  • Standard corner cubes with sub arc second beam deviation over the full diameter of the clear aperture. Protected metal coatings to reduce phase shifting wavefront aberrations and sharp roof edges, are available upon request.
  • Truncated retroreflectors for light-weighting applications and spatial constraints. These prisms have precise beam deviation, transmitted wavefront, and positioning of the theoretical apex to datum surfaces.
  • Lateral transfer corner cubes are ideal for applications that require a lateral beam displacement that is much larger than the clear aperture size. One trihedral reflecting face is located at one end of the prism, while the other two trihedral reflecting faces comprise a roof edge at the opposite end.
  • Custom hollow retroreflectors are comprised of three reflective mirrored surfaces aligned at 90° to one another. Because the entire optical path is in air, these prisms operate over the greatest angular range while mitigating the aberrations associated with the dispersion of glass. Precision Optical employs a proprietary process to create a monolithic hollow retroreflector, which is ideal for large temperature variations and low pressure environments.

We are pleased to offer a wide variety of retroreflectors at competitive prices and lead times, and are able to accommodate the most demanding requirements. Custom laser-line and broadband anti-reflection coatings are available on the entry faces; and protected aluminum, silver, or gold coatings are available on the reflecting faces to enhance total internal reflection.

 If you are interested in our catalog corner cube options, please see our attached (PDF) catalog drawing.