A new laser differential confocal ultra-long focal length measurement (LDCFM) method is proposed with the capability to self-calibrate the reference lens (RL) focal length and the axial space between the test lens and RL. Using the property that the focus of laser differential confocal ultra-long focal length measurement system (LDCFS) precisely corresponds to the null point of the differential confocal axial intensity curve, the proposed LDCFM measures the RL focal length f
R′ by precisely identifying the positions of the focus and last surface of RL, measures the axial space d
0 between RL and test ultra-long focal length lens (UFL) by identifying the last surface of RL and the vertex of UFL last surface, and measures the variation l in focus position of LDCFS with and without test UFL, and then calculates the UFL focal length f
T′ by the above measured f
0 and l. In addition, a LDCFS based on the proposed method is developed for a large aperture lens. The experimental results indicate that the relative uncertainty is less than 0.01% for the test UFL, which has an aperture of 610 mm and focal length of 31,000 mm. LDCFM provides a novel approach for the high-precision focal-length measurement of large-aperture UFL.
© 2015 Optical Society of America
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