Remote Optical Alignment Tool
Original Publication Date: 1988-Feb-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-14
A method to provide for total re-alignment of all downline components of an integrated laser-optic system after a laser tube change is described. When a laser tube is replaced, each optical component is aligned to the new position of the laser, which takes several hours of engineering time. Since all of the processing optic's positions are not effected by a tube change, the new laser could be "aimed" exactly down the original optical axis using x-y micrometer fixtures for the laser together with precision beam height detectors. The alignment tool consists of a special photodetector broken in to four quadrants (i.e., "Quad" detector) with a central aperture slightly greater than the working laser beam. The read out from this tool is sent to a remote panel.