Which measuring system is used at NASA?

Jenoptik lenses will provide the first images of Mars

The Jenoptik team in Jupiter, Florida has developed three types of lenses that are used with the Mars rover's technical cameras and are therefore critical to the mission. First, navigation lenses will capture the first live video footage of the mission while the rover explores the surface of Mars autonomously. The second type of lens is used to identify and avoid hazards, as it provides images via the so-called "Hazard Avoidance Camera" ("HazCam") that help the rover to recognize obstacles. On the other hand, these lenses enable NASA engineers to see the movements of the robotic arm while the sample is being taken. Thirdly, the collection of rock and soil samples is tracked with a so-called cache lens. Since this “CacheCam” will come very close to the samples to be collected, the purity requirements were extremely high in order to avoid any possible contamination.

All three lens types were manufactured in a class 5 clean room with the latest filter technology for high-precision optical assemblies. Jenoptik also developed customer-specific test systems to measure the optical performance at demanding temperature extremes and to withstand the conditions on Mars. For this purpose, Jenoptik engineers carried out several environmental tests in a vacuum and over a wide temperature range, the lowest temperature being -135 ° C.

"We have a lot of experience with demanding applications that require competence in the development, manufacture and testing of such complex optical assemblies, such as those used in the semiconductor, medical and defense industries," says Jay Kumler, President of Jenoptik Optical Systems in North America. “We take great pride in overcoming the technical challenges and extensive, thorough testing that ultimately benefits the entire company. And we are honored to be part of the monumental mission to Mars. "

Image: Artist's concept of Rover on Mars. © NASA

About Jenoptik and the Light & Optics division

As a global technology group, Jenoptik is active in four divisions. Optical technologies are the basis of our business: We are active in photonics with the majority of our range of products and services. Our key markets primarily include semiconductor equipment, medical technology, automotive and mechanical engineering, transport, aviation, and security and defense technology. Jenoptik has around 4,000 employees worldwide.

The Light & Optics division is a globally active OEM supplier of solutions and products based on photonic technologies. Jenoptik offers a wide range of services and combines extensive specialist knowledge of optics, laser technology, digital image processing, optoelectronics and software from more than 25 years of experience. Her customers include leading plant and machine builders as well as device manufacturers in areas such as semiconductor equipment, laser material processing, medical technology and life science, industrial automation, automotive & mobility as well as security and scientific institutes. As a development and production partner, Jenoptik bundles key technologies in the Light & Optics division, thereby raising market and customer-specific systems to a new level and thus covering the growing need for more highly integrated photonics solutions. The systems, modules and components used help our customers to optimally master their future challenges with the help of photonic technologies.