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Precision Optical Enjoys 5th Year Partnering with Irvine Valley College

In an ongoing effort to supply the optics and photonics industry with qualified technicians, Precision Optical is now in its fifth year of partnership with Irvine Valley College’s Laser Technology Program.

LASR225 had active enrollment in Fall 2018 with 24 students!  Like previous years, Precision Optical offered classes in optical cutting & shaping, fine grinding & polishing, and quality assurance.  Students were very engaged in the classes and discussions were very encouraging.  The students asked intuitive questions of our industry-volunteer panel, which included Precision Optical President & CTO Nicolaus Lambert (instructor and demonstrator), Optical Engineer  Bo Wang (co-instructor and demonstrator), Shop Foreman of Optical Fabrication John Hllywa (field demonstrator), and Optical Inspector Sean Baume (inspection equipment demonstrator).

After a detailed applications-based lecture offered by Precision Optical staff for each class, the group was given a comprehensive shop tour of each critical department and work center.  For the cutting and shaping class, the students got exposure to our optical fabrication department, including our cutting, shaping, edging, blocking, beveling, and CNC work centers.  For grinding, the students were able to experiment with grinding actual substrates and inspecting them in process.  For polishing, the students were given full access to our polishing department, and several demonstrations were provided including observing “shop” test plate fringes, autocollimator setup, goniometer usage, and laser interferometry.  Students witnessed firsthand what it takes to properly fabricate an optical element from raw glass to “near-net shape” to a complete finished precision optic!

The centerpiece of the course has always been the quality assurance class.  Students were broken into groups, and each student was provided with a unique right angle prism and corresponding ISO 10110 drawing.  The students performed a series of inspections using industry-grade equipment, including:  incoming visual inspection for surface defects and material imperfections, mechanical inspection of

physical dimensions, angular inspection, and analysis of surface texture and surface form.

For further insight into the IVC Laser Technology Program, please view their promotional video for inspiration!  We look forward to continued mutual beneficial partnership with the Laser Technology Program.