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ASPE Meetings

 25th ASPE Annual Meeting
 2011 Spring Topical Meeting

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Highly Successful Topical Meetings

The world's experts in servo-control and interferometry met at the ASPE Spring and Summer Topical Meetings. Both Meetings were filled to capacity and both reported as being highly successful.

The Spring Topical Meeting in Boston, MA was the third in our control series that started in Philadelphia in 2001. It began with a well-attended tutorial on Sunday and a two day meeting addressing control systems for such disparate precision applications as Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, atomic force microscopes and scanning stages for VLSI systems. The 100 attendees listened to 28 papers supplemented by spirited discussions of the problems and solutions.

The Summer Topical Meeting in Asheville, NC was the fourth in our Interferometry series that began in 1992. Distance, surface profiling, optical coherence tomography and emerging technologies were presented. Applications in research and manufacturing for the optical, semiconductor, medical and scientific markets were discussed and energetically debated during the sessions and copious networking time. Participants left anticipating the next meeting in 2015.

We would like to thank the organizers and all who participated in both meetings for making them a success.

The next topical meeting will be jointly sponsored with euspen in Charlotte, NC on the subject of Freeform Optics and Structured Surfaces.

25th Anniversary Annual Meeting in Atlanta , Georgia

The momentum is building towards our Annual Meeting in Atlanta. This is your once-a-year opportunity to find inspiration through a host of technical presentations and poster sessions as well as learn via our superb tutorial offerings, networking with the experts and meeting with leading manufacturers. Click on the link to the right to review the advanced program and to register for the Meeting.

I look forward to seeing you in Atlanta.

Tom Dow, Executive Director ASPE

Precision Tips


Precision manufacturing requires accurate, repeatable processes. Environmental disturbances are major limiters to next generation manufacturing performance.

Three strategies to improve machine/instrument resistance to environmental disturbances are as follows:

 Decouple: Break all paths by which each disturbance influences performance. Example: Shield all radiant, conductive and convective heat transfer.

Desensitize: Design for minimized response to disturbances. Example: Use low thermal expansion materials to reduce thermal induced drift.

 Control: Provide an appropriately controlled local environment. Example: Temperature controlled rooms and environmental enclosures.

PATTERN #2: Conceive an envelope encompassing the machine/instrument. List the factors that are known to disturb the machine and then weigh the magnitude of their influence. Formulate design strategies to decouple, desensitize or control the effects of these disturbances within the requirements of the machine/instrument specifications.


*Based on "Patterns for Precision Instrument Design", a classic ASPE tutorial by C. Teague, C. Evans and later D. Swyt. It uniquely identifies 12 foundational mechanical concepts or patterns driving precision in fabrication, assembly and metrology.

The American Society for Precision Engineering promotes the future of manufacturing in America by advancing precision engineering; though supporting education; and encouraging the development and application of precision principles.

ASPE, founded in 1986, is a non-profit organization.

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