Concave spherical mirrors for Schlieren Imaging

Drawing upon its uniquely stable manufacturing environment – Optical Surfaces routinely produces the highest quality concave spherical mirrors for Schlieren Imaging systems in a range of materials including fused silica, Zerodur and ClearCeram.

Over the years – the company has produced concave spherical mirrors for Schlieren imaging applications looking at airflow turbulence, explosive shockwaves, gas leaks and visualisation of transparent thermal phenomena.

The skilled optical craftsmen at Optical Surfaces are experienced in producing concave spherical mirrors (up to 800mm in diameter) with surface accuracy of better than lambda/10 with particular emphasis on smoothness of the profile. Ultra high precision surface finish and durable optical coatings combine to provide superior Schlieren image quality.

Research and industrial groups acknowledge Schlieren imaging to be the preferred technique for visualising density variations in transparent media.  In a typical Schlieren imaging set-up, a source directs light onto a long radius concave spherical mirror, which collimates the light and redirects it onto a second identical mirror. The resultant image may be captured by an imaging camera or on a screen.

For further information on ultra-high precision mirrors optimised for Schlieren imaging please visit

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