University of Wisconsin-Madison Physical Sciences Lab

HSX Little Black Box

Friday, April 5th, 2013

This little black box is a mount for four optical systems on the Helically Symmetric eXperiment (or HSX) at UW-Madison. HSX is a research plasma containment experiment that PSL has been involved with since 1993.

Simon Anderson, from HSX, contacted PSL about building the mount. He sent measurements to PSL, which engineer Ken Kriesel turned into a SolidWorks drawing. Working with PSL designer Amy Pagac, and consulting with Simon, a finished drawing and blueprint were made. Once the print was approved, PSL instrument maker Bart Dana loaded the whole drawing into his CNC mill. From the pictures, you can see there are a lot of pockets for screw heads, seals, and flanges. Something that is not apparent is two of the holes are slightly offset to allow clearance for the mount flanges. All of this was run as a single program.

PSL also modified four commercially available circular adapters to allow the close spacings shown.

Once completed, the mount was black anodized.