Institute of Plasma Physics of the CAS (The TOPTEC Research Centre)

Address: Sobotecká 1660, 511 01 Turnov, Czech Republic


Founding: 2010

Number of employees: 43

The Research Centre for Special Optics and Optoelectronic Systems, the optical department of the Institute of Plasma Physics of the CAS. The Centre team continues a more than 45-year-long tradition of research and development of optics in Turnov. TOPTEC forms part of a net of application centres of the ASCR. At present, the TOPTEC Centre is the only R&D facility that focuses on ultra-precision and special optics in the Czech Republic. The main objective of the Centre is research and development in the field of aspheric and free-form optics, precision measurement, and thin film layers, and the application of the results in the industrial sector.

The TOPTEC Centre currently features a high-quality scientific team with international experience from leading world research centres (e.g., EPFL – Switzerland; CERN – Switzerland; Lund University – Sweden; ITO – Germany; TNO – Netherlands).

The Centre is a partner in four European Space Agency (ESA) projects and actively cooperates with leading companies in the optical industry and related branches (Centre Spatial de Liege, OHB Italia, AIRBUS Defence & Space, MICOS Engineering).

TOPTEC Laboratories provide extensive instrumental, machine, and analytical infrastructure which enables the implementation of complex research and development tasks. The necessary mechanics for use in optical systems, alignment aids, mounting clamps, or measurement setups are also developed and manufactured within the Centre.

The TOPTEC Centre can provide industrial partners and small enterprises as well as research institutions and universities with unique partnership in the field of R&D of super precise optics, particularly in the following areas:

  • development and cooperation on development of new systems and methods;
  • unique optical element design and production;
  • analysis of optical and mechanical systems performance;
  • measurement methods and procedure design and development;
  • machining process research and development

Research specialisations:

Optical and optoelectronic materials

Main projects:

Czech Science Foundation, 13-10365S: Planar acoustic metamaterials with active control of acoustic impedance

Czech Science Foundation, 14-32228S: Digital holographic tomography of ferroelectric domain walls

Czech Science Foundation, 16-11965S: Adaptive acoustic metasurfaces for active sound field control

Aspherical and free-form optical elements with high surface quality

Main projects:

Technology Agency of the CR, TA03010609: Nanofibers and abrasive nanoparticles as a base of a new generation of tools for fine polishing of surfaces

Technology Agency of the CR, TA03010843: Advanced optical systems using aspheric surfaces

Research solutions:

Light-weighted aspheric mirrors of the METIS (Multi Element Telescope for Imaging and Spectroscopy) telescope for the ESA Solar Orbiter mission – EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY. METIS is a coronagraph developed for the study of the structure and dynamics of the solar corona, primarily in the deep UV region. The department is developing the optics and mechanics for the mirror telescope placed on the Solar Orbiter satellite to observe the solar corona.

Optical System of the Coronagraph ASPIICS (Association de Satellite Pour l‘Imagerie et l‘Interferometrie de la Couronne Solaire) for the PROBA-3 Mission. The mission involves a coordinated-formation flight of two satellites forming a giant telescope with an external occulter at a distance exceeding 100 metres. The department is responsible for the complete design and tolerancing of the optical system including the mechanics, manufacturing, and integration.

Complex optical systems

Main projects:

Technology Agency of the CR, TA04011017: High-power modules for fibre laser pumping

Ministry of Industry and Trade of the CR, FV10071: Process optics for new generation laser heads

Research solutions:

NEOSTEL (Near Earth Object Survey TELescope) fly-eye telescope optics. NEOSTEL is a ground telescope for sky surveillance and automatic searching for potentially dangerous objects in the proximity of the Earth. The department is in charge of the design and manufacturing of polygonal aspheric elements of the fly-eye telescope, development of a system for the rough alignment of the telescope by means of laser beams, and development of a thermally compensated autocollimator with a 700 mm-diameter for the final alignment of the telescope.

AIRBUS TIRI (Technology Pre-Development of Thermal Infra-Red Imager – AIRBUS SA, Toulouse, France)

Optics for the instrument covering the swath of Sentinel-2 and providing TIR imagery in at least two spectral channels with moderate top of atmosphere temperature resolution (approximately 0.5 K) adequate for land monitoring.

Advanced methods for optical measurement

Main projects:

Technology Agency of the CR, TA03010893: Measurement instruments for aspherical and free-form optical surfaces

Czech Science Foundation, 17-6284Y: Coherent excitation coding for exploitation of compressed sensing in laser spectroscopy

HORIZON 2020 – EMPIR, FreeFORM – 15SIB01: Reference algorithms and metrology on aspherical and free-form lenses

Research solutions:

Interferometric multi-wavelength device for strongly aspheric surfaces

Optical System for welding process observation and monitoring

Ministry of the Interior of the CR, BV II, VG20132015110: Hyper-spectral detection system of dangerous substances (HDES)

In addition, researchers of the TOPTEC Centre solve tens of contractual research projects every year, especially for commercial entities as well as scientific institutes from various fields of expertise (aerospace, automotive, astronomy, biomedicine, engineering, etc.). Customers of the Centre include: Siemens Electrical Apparatus Ltd. Suzhou (China), Siemens AG (Germany), REHAU AUTOMOTIVE LLC (USA), Aerospace Research and Test establishment Ltd. (Czech Republic), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne – EPFL (Switzerland), and many more.

Kontaktní osoba

Radek Melich, Ph.D.
Research Programme Leader

Tel.: +420 487 953 917
Mob.: +420 776 783 952