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Vacuum-Compatible Lens Tubes


  • Lens Tubes Mount Either Ø1/2" (12.7 mm) or Ø1" (25.4 mm) Optics
  • SM05- or SM1-Threading Standard Used Throughout Thorlabs' Product Line
  • Vented Design to Reduce Air Pockets Under Vacuum

SM05L03V

0.30" Thread Depth

SM1L03V

0.30" Thread Depth

SM1V05V

Adjustable Lens Tube,
0.81" Travel Range

SM1L10V

1.00" Thread Depth

Vents along the lens tube threading allow for air to easily pass mounted optics.

Item # Engraved Above External Threading

Related Items


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Additional Vacuum-Compatible Components

Many of our other optomechanical components can be special ordered for vacuum use. Contact techsupport@thorlabs.com for details.

Vacuum Specifications
Vacuum Compatibility
as Packageda
>10-6 Torr
Materials 6061-T6 Aluminum
Preparation and
Packaging
Chemically Cleaned and
Double Vacuum-Bagged
Aluminum Outgassing
Rate at 20 °C
7.6 x 10-9 Torr-Liters/s/cm2
  • This is the pressure at which these components can be used with no additional processing. They can be used at even lower pressures with additional cleaning and processing.
Vent in Vacuum Lens Tubes
Click to Enlarge

Vents along the threading and at the ends of these tubes provide a free path for air to escape when under vacuum.

Features

  • SM05- (0.535"-40) and SM1- (1.035"-40) Threaded Lens Tubes
  • Stackable and Adjustable Versions
  • Compatible with SM05- or SM1-Threaded Vacuum Components
  • Lens Tubes Directly Accept Ø1/2" (Ø12.7 mm) or Ø1" (Ø25.4 mm) Optics

Lens Tubes are ideal for creating compact optical subassemblies with light-tight beam paths. The lens tubes sold here can be used to house one or several optical elements. The SM05-threaded lens tubes are designed for Ø1/2" optics, while our SM1-threaded lens tubes fit Ø1" optics. These vacuum-compatible lens tubes feature venting channels along their threading and at the ends of each tube that allow air trapped between mounted optics an easy means of escape during pumpdown.

We offer two varieties of vacuum-compatible lens tubes. Stackable lens tubes are designed to be threaded up against each other to create modular lens tube systems of fixed length. Adjustable lens tubes have extended external threading which allow the lens cell to be threaded back and forth along the optical axis at the end of a lens tube system and locked in place with an included locking ring.

Optics are secured and separated by vacuum-compatible retaining rings that are positioned along the length of the lens tube using a compatible spanner wrench, sold below. Each of the lens tubes on this page come with a compatible SM-threaded retaining ring.

In addition to the lens tubes featured on this page, Thorlabs also offers Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø30 mm, Ø1.5", Ø2", and Ø3" stackable lens tubes as well as Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø2", and Ø3" adjustable lens tubes for non-vacuum applications, each of which is equipped with an SM series thread standard that depends on the tube diameter (see the Threading Specs tab). Vacuum-compablitble, vented versions of these lens tubes can be ordered by contacting tech support.

Vacuum Compatibility Information
Our vacuum-compatible optomechanics are chemically cleaned and prepared for vacuum applications before packaging. They are compatible directly out of the packaging with vacuum environments down to 10-6 Torr. With additional cleaning and processing, they can be used at even lower pressures, only limited by the outgassing rate of the aluminum (see the table below). The material properties of the aluminum and the cleaning methods completed by the end user should be used to determine the appropriateness of these products and materials in a specific vacuum system.

Thorlabs' Threading Specifications

Thorlabs' lens tubes utilize a series of non-standard threadings. Threading specifications are given below for our SM threadings utilized in our lens tube and cage system components so that you can machine mating components to suit your application. We also offer products with C-Mount and RMS threadings, and the specifications for these threadings are also given below. Please note that other manufacturers may have different tolerances for these threads. For other thread specifications that are not listed here, please contact Tech Support.

SM05 Threading: Ø1/2" Lens Tubes, 16 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 0.535"-40.0, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 0.535"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 0.5340" Min Major Diameter 0.5350"
Min Major Diameter 0.5289" Min Pitch Diameter 0.5188"
Max Pitch Diameter 0.5178" Max Pitch Diameter 0.5230"
Min Pitch Diameter 0.5146" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 0.508"
Max Minor Diameter 0.5069" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 0.514"
RMS Threading: Objective, Scan, and Tube Lenses
External Thread, 0.800"-36.0, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 0.800"-36.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 0.7989" Min Major Diameter 0.8000"
Min Major Diameter 0.7934" Min Pitch Diameter 0.7820"
Max Pitch Diameter 0.7809" Max Pitch Diameter 0.7866"
Min Pitch Diameter 0.7774" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 0.770"
Max Minor Diameter 0.7688" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 0.777"
C-Mount Threading: Machine Vision LensesCCD/CMOS Cameras
External Thread, 1.000"-32.0, UN-2A Internal Thread, 1.000"-32.0, UN-2B
Max Major Diameter 0.9989" Min Major Diameter 1.0000"
Min Major Diameter 0.9929" Min Pitch Diameter 0.9797"
Max Pitch Diameter 0.9786" Max Pitch Diameter 0.9846"
Min Pitch Diameter 0.9748" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 0.966"
Max Minor Diameter 0.9651" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 0.974"
SM1 Threading: Ø1" Lens Tubes, 30 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 1.035"-40.0, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 1.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 1.0339" Min Major Diameter 1.0350"
Min Major Diameter 1.0288" Min Pitch Diameter 1.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter 1.0177" Max Pitch Diameter 1.0234"
Min Pitch Diameter 1.0142" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 1.008"
Max Minor Diameter 1.0068" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 1.014"
SM30 Threading: Ø30 mm Lens Tubes
External Thread, M30.5x0.5 Internal Thread, M30.5x0.5
Max Major Diameter 30.480 mm Min Major Diameter 30.500 mm
Min Major Diameter 30.371 mm Min Pitch Diameter 30.175 mm
Max Pitch Diameter 30.155 mm Max Pitch Diameter 30.302 mm
Min Pitch Diameter 30.059 mm Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 29.959 mm
Max Minor Diameter 29.938 mm Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 30.094 mm
SM1.5 Threading: Ø1.5" Lens Tubes
External Thread, 1.535"-40, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 1.535"-40, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 1.5339" Min Major Diameter 1.535"
Min Major Diameter 1.5288" Min Pitch Diameter 1.5188"
Max Pitch Diameter 1.5177" Max Pitch Diameter 1.5236"
Min Pitch Diameter 1.5140" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 1.508"
Max Minor Diameter 1.5068" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 1.514"
SM2 Threading: Ø2" Lens Tubes, 60 mm Cage Systems
External Thread, 2.035"-40.0, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 2.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 2.0338" Min Major Diameter 2.0350"
Min Major Diameter 2.0287" Min Pitch Diameter 2.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter 2.0176" Max Pitch Diameter 2.0239"
Min Pitch Diameter 2.0137" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 2.008"
Max Minor Diameter 2.0067" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 2.014"
SM3 Threading: Ø3" Lens Tubes
External Thread, 3.035"-40.0, UNS-2A Internal Thread, 3.035"-40.0, UNS-2B
Max Major Diameter 3.0337" Min Major Diameter 3.0350"
Min Major Diameter 3.0286" Min Pitch Diameter 3.0188"
Max Pitch Diameter 3.0175" Max Pitch Diameter 3.0242"
Min Pitch Diameter 3.0133" Min Minor Diameter (and 83.3% of thread) 3.008"
Max Minor Diameter 3.0066" Max Minor Diameter (and 64.9% of thread) 3.014"

Posted Comments:
geoffrey Rhoads  (posted 2020-08-27 11:15:04.17)
I submitted an earlier feedback and it said my security code entered was invalid, then it all just went away. I hope you got it!
llamb  (posted 2020-09-01 08:16:34.0)
Thank you for contacting Thorlabs. I have reached out to you by email directly to discuss your feedback and application.

SM05-Threaded Vacuum-Compatible Stackable Lens Tubes

SM05Lxx Lens Tube Diagram
  • Stackable Design Enables Multi-Element Optical Systems
  • Accepts Ø1/2" (12.7 mm) Optics
  • SM05-Threaded (0.535"-40) Bore
  • 0.30", 0.50", and 1.00" Internal Thread Depths Available

These Ø1/2" lens tubes, with their stackable design and ability to interface with other SM05-threaded components, can be used to house compact optical assemblies or as a building block in complex optomechanical systems. Made from 6061-T6 aluminum, these vented lens tubes are vacuum compatible down to 10-6 Torr. One SM05RRV vacuum-compatible retaining ring is included with each lens tube.

Item # L Internal Thread Depth
SM05L03V 0.33" (8.4 mm) 0.30" (7.6 mm)
SM05L05V 0.53" (13.5 mm) 0.50" (12.7 mm)
SM05L10V 1.03" (26.2 mm) 1.00" (25.4 mm)
Non-Vacuum-Compatible Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø30 mm, Ø1.5", Ø2", and Ø3" Stackable Lens Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM05L03V Support Documentation
SM05L03VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM05 Lens Tube, 0.30" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$34.89
Today
SM05L05V Support Documentation
SM05L05VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM05 Lens Tube, 0.50" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$35.55
Today
SM05L10V Support Documentation
SM05L10VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM05 Lens Tube, 1.00" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$38.05
Today

SM05-Threaded Vacuum-Compatible Adjustable Lens Tube

SM05V05 Adjustable Lens Tube Mechanical Drawing
Click for Details
Amin and Amax are the minimum and maximum distances another lens tube can be positioned from the back of the lens cell when using the locking ring.
  • Long Externally Threaded Section for Adjustable Positioning of Mounted Optics
  • Adjustment Range of 0.31" (7.9 mm)
  • Accepts Ø1/2" (Ø12.7 mm) Optics up to 0.43" (11.0 mm) Thick
  • One SM05RRV Retaining Ring and SM05NT1V Locking Ring Included

This Ø1/2" vacuum-compatible adjustable lens tube allows optics to be precisely positioned along the optical axis of a lens tube system. Made from 6061-T6 aluminum, these vented lens tubes are vacuum compatible down to 10-6 Torr.

To operate, mount the optic in the internally threaded section using the included SM05RRV retaining ring. Then thread the adjustable lens tube into a compatible SM05-threaded lens tube until the optic is at the desired position. At this point, the included SM05NT1V Slotted Locking Ring can be used to fix the position of the lens tube. See the video to the right for a demonstration. This locking ring contains slots for the 3/4" end of the SPW502 Spanner Wrench.

This rotating adjustable lens tube is an ideal solution for fine tuning of the first and last lenses in a lens tube system. Although a lens tube can be attached to the front of the adjustable lens tube, it should only be done after the position of the optic has been fixed, since this lens tube will need to be free to rotate and translate if the position of the optic is changed.

Item # External Thread Length (L) Adjustment Range (Amin to Amax)a
SM05V05V 0.5" (12.7 mm) 0.11" - 0.42" (2.8 mm - 10.7 mm)
  • Amin includes the thickness of the included locking ring, while Amax accounts for the minimum 0.08" (2 mm) thread depth needed to engage the attached lens tube or component.
Non-Vacuum-Compatible Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø2", and Ø3" Adjustable Lens Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM05V05V Support Documentation
SM05V05VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible Ø1/2" Adjustable Lens Tube, 0.31" Travel
$46.33
Today

SM1-Threaded Vacuum-Compatible Stackable Lens Tubes

SM1Lxx Lens Tube Diagram
  • Stackable Design Enables Multi-Element Optical Systems
  • Accepts Ø1" (Ø25.4 mm) Optics
  • SM1-Threaded (1.035"-40) Bore
  • 0.30", 0.50", and 1.00" Internal Thread Depths Available

These Ø1" lens tubes, with their stackable design and ability to interface with other SM1-threaded components, can be used to house compact optical assemblies or as a building block in complex optomechanical systems. Made from 6061-T6 aluminum, these vented lens tubes are vacuum compatible down to 10-6 Torr. One SM1RRV vacuum-compatible retaining ring is included with each lens tube.

Item # L Internal Thread Depth
SM1L03 0.33" (8.4 mm) 0.30" (7.6 mm)
SM1L05 0.53" (13.5 mm) 0.50" (12.7 mm)
SM1L10 1.03" (26.2 mm) 1.00" (25.4 mm)
Non-Vacuum-Compatible Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø30 mm, Ø1.5", Ø2", and Ø3" Stackable Lens Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM1L03V Support Documentation
SM1L03VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM1 Lens Tube, 0.30" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$39.14
Lead Time
SM1L05V Support Documentation
SM1L05VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM1 Lens Tube, 0.50" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$39.67
Lead Time
SM1L10V Support Documentation
SM1L10VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM1 Lens Tube, 1.00" Thread Depth, One Retaining Ring Included
$44.54
Lead Time

SM1-Threaded Vacuum-Compatible Adjustable Lens Tube


Adjustable Lens Tube Usage
SM05V05 Adjustable Lens Tube Mechanical Drawing
Click for Details

Amin and Amax are the minimum and maximum distances another lens tube can be positioned from the back of the lens cell when using the locking ring.
  • Long Externally Threaded Section for Adjustable Positioning of Mounted Optics
  • Adjustment Range of 0.81" (20.6 mm)
  • Accepts Ø1" (Ø25.4 mm) Optics up to 0.42" (10.7 mm) Thick
  • One SM1RRV Retaining Ring and SM1NT1V Locking Ring Included

This Ø1" vacuum-compatible adjustable lens tube allows optics to be precisely positioned along the optical axis of a lens tube system. Made from 6061-T6 aluminum, these vented lens tubes are vacuum compatible down to 10-6 Torr.

To operate, mount the optic in the internally threaded section using the included SM1RRV retaining ring. Then thread the adjustable lens tube into a compatible SM1-threaded lens tube until the optic is at the desired position. At this point, the included SM1NT1V Slotted Locking Ring can be used to fix the position of the lens tube. See the video to the right for a demonstration. This locking ring contains slots for the 1¼" end of the SPW502 Spanner Wrench.

This rotating adjustable lens tube is an ideal solution for fine tuning of the first and last lenses in a lens tube system. Although a lens tube can be attached to the front of the adjustable lens tube, it should only be done after the position of the optic has been fixed, since this lens tube will need to be free to rotate and translate if the position of the optic is changed.

Item # External Thread Length (L) Adjustment Range (Amin to Amax)a
SM1V10V 1.0" (25.4 mm) 0.11" - 0.92" (2.8 mm - 23.4 mm)
  • Amin includes the thickness of the included locking ring, while Amax accounts for the minimum 0.08" (2 mm) thread depth needed to engage the attached lens tube or component.
Non-Vacuum-Compatible Alternatives Ø1/2", Ø1", Ø2", and Ø3" Adjustable Lens Tubes
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM1V10V Support Documentation
SM1V10VNEW! Vacuum-Compatible Ø1" Adjustable Lens Tube, 0.81" Travel Range
$52.99
Lead Time

Spanner Wrenches and Vacuum-Compatible Retaining Rings

  • Vacuum-Compatible Retaining Rings for Securing Either Ø1/2" or Ø1" Optics
  • Spanner Wrenches Provide One-Handed Adjustment of Retaining Rings
  • SPW801 Adjustable Spanner Wrench can Accommodate Diameters from 0.12" (3.0 mm) to 2.89" (73.4 mm)

Thorlabs offers vacuum-compatible retaining rings for use with aluminum vacuum-compatible components. SM05RRV retaining rings are for securing Ø1/2" optics in SM05-threaded (0.535"-40) components, and SM1RRV retaining rings are for securing Ø1" optics in SM1-threaded (1.035"-40) components. Each 6061-T6 aluminum ring is shipped double-vacuum bagged and is vacuum compatible to 10-6 Torr.

To secure these retaining rings, we offer several spanner wrenchs. The SPW603 and SPW606 spanner wrenches are 1" long and can adjust SM05- and SM1-threaded retaining rings, respectively. The SPW602 spanner wrench is built for SM1-threaded retaining rings, and its 3.88" long body includes a graduated scale to help seat rings at a repeatable depth in a lens tube. The SPW801 adjustable spanner wrench can be resized for retaining rings as large as the SM3RR for Ø3" components. We also offer the SPB05 SM05 and SPB1 SM1 Spanner Bits, which can be used with a standard 1/4" hex driver (sold separately). The both bits are included as part of the SPB600 Spanner Wrench Bit Kit. Note that our spanner wrenches are neither rated for vacuum compatibility nor prepared for cleanroom use.

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM05RRV Support Documentation
SM05RRVNEW!Unanodized Aluminum SM05 Retaining Ring for Ø1/2" Lens Tubes and Mounts
$10.94
Today
SM1RRV Support Documentation
SM1RRVNEW!Unanodized Aluminum SM1 Retaining Ring for Ø1" Lens Tubes and Mounts
$10.94
Today
SPW603 Support Documentation
SPW603Spanner Wrench for SM05-Threaded Retaining Rings, Length = 1.00"
$26.00
Today
SPW606 Support Documentation
SPW606Customer Inspired! Spanner Wrench for SM1-Threaded Retaining Rings, Length = 1.00"
$28.38
Today
SPW602 Support Documentation
SPW602Spanner Wrench for SM1-Threaded Retaining Rings, Graduated Scale with 0.1"
(2.5 mm) Increments, Length = 3.88"
$28.38
Today
SPW801 Support Documentation
SPW801Adjustable Spanner Wrench
$103.97
Today
SPW102 Support Documentation
SPW102Adjustable Spanner Wrench, Replacement Blade Set
$30.24
Today

Spanner Wrenches and Vacuum-Compatible Locking Rings

  • Vacuum-Compatible Locking Rings for Securing Adjustable Lens Tubes
  • Available with either Internal SM05- or SM1-Threading
  • Spanner Wrench Provides One-Handed Adjustment of Locking Rings

Thorlabs offers vacuum-compatible locking rings for use with aluminum vacuum-compatible adjustable lens tubes. Their lack of anodization and 6061-T6 alumimun construction allows them to be used at vacuum levels down to 10-6 Torr. Each ring is double vacuum-bagged for clean room use. These locking rings are knurled to allow hand tightening. For applications where it is difficult to reach the locking ring by hand, each locking ring contains slots for an end of the SPW502 Spanner Wrench. This spanner wrench is 6.10" (154.9 mm) long and can adjust both SM05- and SM1-threaded locking rings.

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available
SM05NT1V Support Documentation
SM05NT1VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM05-Threaded Locking Ring, 0.75" Outer Diameter, Slots for Spanner Wrench
$10.60
Today
SM1NT1V Support Documentation
SM1NT1VNEW!Vacuum-Compatible SM1-Threaded Locking Ring, 1.25" Outer Diameter, Slots for Spanner Wrench
$11.11
Today
SPW502 Support Documentation
SPW502Spanner Wrench for Slotted SM05, SM1, and C-Mount Locking Rings
$17.40
Today
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