Optical Tables, Breadboards, Platforms and Posts available from Stock
Our broad range of dedicated optomechanics around optical tables, breadboards, platforms and posts available from stock is designed for demanding applications and provides exceptional performance with a wide variety of flexible options.
With their rigid aluminium construction, our sturdy table clamps and clamp adapters offer a secure method of mounting base plates to isolation tables for off-axis mounting applications. Clamps with adjustable heights are used to clamp devices of various thicknesses, while other table clamps are ideal for creating pedestal systems, using adapters with or without thread as well as our broad range of spacers, available with lengths ranging from 3 mm to 150 mm.
As a solid solution for supporting platforms or other mechanical hardware, use our 1.5 inch diameter platform support rods available with lengths of 100 mm, 150 mm and 250 mm, or our 1 inch diameter, 150 mm or 300 mm mounting posts plus dedicated post clamps.
Mounting blocks for 0.5 inch, 0.75 inch or 1.0 inch optics provide an easy and robust method for mounting monolithic flexures. For periscope beam steering configuration, these aluminium mounting blocks are also available with a fixed 45° angle.
In addition to our optomechanics around optical tables, breadboards, platforms and posts available from stock, we support a series of further mounting blocks which mount from the top, so access in tight places is simple. If you have a tight optical layout, our monolithic flexures and mounting blocks provide the ultimate in stability and vibration resistance.
Our wide variety of platforms and tables are designed with flexibility in mind. These units feature ¼-20 tapped holes for limitless attachment in any application, and the standard hole pattern facilitates the movement of devices between a platform and an isolation table-top. A cast aluminum plate as the platforms’ base material ensures stability even when a large portion of the surface has been machined away.
The main purpose of our optical tables, breadboards, platforms and posts is to support, hold and adjust the position of high-precision optical components – available from AMS Technologies in a very broad spectrum, ranging from optical mirrors, optical lenses, optical assemblies, optical windows, prisms, beamsplitters or optical filters to fiber collimators and focusers, and also lasers and light sources.
Optical tables serve as a solid and defined foundation for vibration-sensitive optical set-ups in various fields of application, mostly in development and research. A rigid, usually rectangular tabletop rests on a suitable base frame, which can be rigid or mechanically insulating to dampen vibrations to varying degrees.
The decisive factor for the vibration behaviour of an optical table is its resonances – if these resonances are not excited, the table meets the requirements of a rigid, stiff platform and the beam paths of the optical assembly mounted on it are not dynamically deflected and thus remain optimally aligned. To avoid resonance, the mounting of the tabletop is often done via vibration dampers with a low spring constant (mechanical low-pass filters), so that disturbances such as impact noise or other vibrations caused by road traffic or construction work, for example, remain as low as possible.
In relation to the planar expansion, the top of an optical table should be as thick as possible. In order to keep the weight within an acceptable range, the panels are usually made in sandwich construction, i.e. a honeycomb structure. Thick sheets of steel, aluminium or carbon fiber form the top and bottom of the tabletop and are connected by many vertical profiles or tubes. In addition to the weight advantages, such a construction dampens high-frequency vibrations particularly well.
The surface of an optical table usually has a regular grid of threaded holes that are used to attach optical components by means of special brackets that are screwed into the threaded holes directly or via retaining clamps. For mechanically less critical set-ups, holders that adhere magnetically to the table are also used.
Optical platforms or breadboards provide a (relatively) lightweight and portable yet sturdy foundation for assembling an optical setup comprising of experimental devices or equipment on a flat surface. Most optical platforms or breadboards are made from solid aluminium in a broad variety of shapes and sizes and – like optical tables – feature threaded holes in a regular pattern (metric or imperial system). If magnetic attachment is required, small magnetic strips are a cost-effective alternative to manufacturing a solid steel platform with typically four times the cost of an aluminium platform.
Optical platforms or breadboards provide vertical and angular solid surfaces for mounting components like micromanipulator stages. They are designed to be as flexible as possible for assembly to match the user’s requirements. Frequently, a simple modular component may solve a configuration problem because it can be rotated and translated into unusual formations to access hard-to-reach locations. Large platforms may be used as stand-alone solutions directly on the surface of a table or to add attachment points to an isolation table.
The term “breadboard” is often used for lightweight mounting plates made from multiple layers of material, like stainless steel top and bottom with a steel honeycomb core in between and laminate sidewalls – with the aim of minimizing both weight and cost. These breadboards are ideal for light loads if low weight and low cost are critical.
Support posts and spacers manufactured from solid stainless steel provide unlimited flexibility in positioning optical platforms and breadboards, but also single optical components or devices. Dedicated post clamps or clamping arms allow for flexibly yet securely mounting the posts to the optical table.
Alternative Terms: Isolation Table; Laboratory Table; Optics Table; Optics Platform; Angled Optical Platform; Vertical Optical Platform; Optical Rod; Optical Spacer; Table Clamp; Mounting Block