Posted in | News | Optics and Photonics

Custom Off-Axis Paraboloids

Optical Surfaces Ltd. is a leading international producer of large diameter prototype and custom Off-Axis Paraboloids (OAPs) that deliver outstanding performance.

A selection of custom Off-Axis Paraboloids

A selection of custom Off-Axis Paraboloids. Image Credit: Optical Surfaces Ltd.

Benefiting from an ultra-stable manufacturing environment, and employing proprietary production techniques, Optical Surfaces highly skilled engineers are world renowned for producing OAP mirrors with unmatched surface accuracy, quality, and slope errors.

Off-Axis Paraboloids, also known as off-axis parabolic mirrors, are commonly used as a collimator in many optical systems, where the parabola is used to produce a collimated beam from a point source. Usefully OAP’s provide unhindered aperture and access to the focal plane. They are ideal for broadband or multiple wavelength applications, thanks to their complete achromatic performance. Off-axis paraboloids often deliver the most cost-effective solution without compromising performance to many problems faced by optical and system designers.

Custom OAPs from Optical Surfaces Ltd. are used by leading research establishments and companies for applications including high power laser focusing, focusing on astronomical objects, collimating reference wavefronts, beam expansion, MTF measurement, MRTD testing and bore sight alignment for missile guidance systems.

Working with OAP mirrors, especially for inexperienced technicians, can seem like a daunting task. To this end, Optical Surfaces Ltd has written an informative guide (see to enable users to get top performance from their OAP mirror. This illustrated guide includes an introduction to OAP geometry as well as step-by step instruction on initial alignment; tips to correct for errors in focus and tilt, set off-axis distance and rotation as well as a final alignment procedure to ensure optimised performance.

Off-Axis Paraboloid alignment guide

Off-Axis Paraboloid alignment guide. Image Credit: Optical Surfaces Ltd.


For further information on custom Off-Axis Paraboloids please visit or contact Optical Surfaces Ltd. on +44-208-668-6126 / [email protected].

Optical Surfaces Ltd. has been producing high performance OAPs for more than 60 years. The company’s ISO 9001-2015 approved manufacturing workshops and test facilities are deep underground in a series of tunnels excavated in solid chalk. This provides an environment where temperature is naturally thermally stable, and vibration is extremely low. 

With such stable conditions testing of all OAPs becomes quantifiable and dependable. In addition to these natural advantages, Optical Surfaces Ltd. has invested in an extensive range of test equipment and uses trusted methods to ensure accurate and reliable testing of surface accuracy, quality, and slope errors.



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