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1. (WO2018009251) POSITIONAL ALIGNMENT MECHANISM FOR A LENS ASSEMBLY
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CLAIMS

1 . An alignment mechanism to position and focus a lens assembly, the alignment mechanism comprising:

a housing;

an eccentric shaft supported by the housing, the eccentric shaft being configured to rotate with respect to the housing;

a lens assembly comprising a bracket coupled to the eccentric shaft;

an actuator assembly, coupled to the bracket of the lens assembly and configured to rotate the lens assembly about the eccentric shaft; and

at least one thrust drive nut mounted on the eccentric shaft, the at least one thrust drive nut being configured to move the eccentric shaft and the bracket of the lens assembly in a z-axis direction.

2. The alignment mechanism of claim 1 , wherein the at least one thrust drive nut comprises two thrust drive nuts spaced apart from one another on the eccentric shaft.

3. The alignment mechanism of claim 2, wherein the two thrust drive nuts are threadably secured to the eccentric shaft by fine pitch threads.

4. The alignment mechanism of claim 3, wherein the bracket of the lens assembly is secured to the eccentric shaft by two angular contact bearings.

5. The alignment mechanism of claim 3, wherein the eccentric shaft includes an opening formed therein to receive a tool configured to hold the eccentric shaft and the two thrust drive nuts angularly in phase while rotating the shaft with the tool.

6. The alignment mechanism of claim 5, wherein the tool further is configured to hold the eccentric shaft in place while rotating the thrust drive nuts to lock down the eccentric shaft.

7. The alignment mechanism of claim 4, wherein the actuator assembly is a Geneva-type actuator.

8. The alignment mechanism of claim 4, wherein the housing includes at least one set screw to secure the eccentric shaft in place with respect to the housing.

9. The alignment mechanism of claim 4, further comprising at least one bearing pre-load nut positioned adjacent to one of the two angular contact bearings.

10. The alignment mechanism of claim 9, wherein the at least one bearing pre-load nut comprises two bearing pre-load nuts, a first bearing pre-load nut being positioned adjacent a first of the two angular contact bearings and a second bearing pre-load nut being positioned adjacent a second of the two angular contact bearings.

1 1 . A method of assembling an alignment mechanism used to move a lens assembly in x-axis, y-axis and z-axis directions, the method comprising:

establishing a boresight, field of vision of the lens assembly;

adjusting a centration position of the lens assembly by rotating an eccentric shaft of the alignment mechanism;

rotating at least one thrust drive nut of the alignment mechanism to adjust the z-axis direction to achieve a desired focus; and

locking the at least one thrust drive nut in place.

12. The method of claim 1 1 , wherein an adjustment tool maintains an angular position of the eccentric shaft.

13. The method of claim 12, wherein locking the at least one thrust drive nut in place comprises rotating two thrust drive nuts in opposite directions with the adjustment tool to lock down the focus of the lens assembly.

14. The method of claim 1 1 , further comprising locking at least one set screw.

15. The method of claim 14, further comprising staking the at least one thrust drive nut in place.

16. The method of claim 15, wherein the staking the at least one thrust drive nut in place is achieved by a fast dry epoxy.

17. The method of claim 1 1 , wherein the at least one thrust drive nut includes two thrust drive nuts spaced apart from one another on the eccentric shaft.

18. The method of claim 17, further comprising threadably securing the two thrust drive nuts to the eccentric shaft by fine pitch threads.

19. The method of claim 18, wherein the eccentric shaft includes an opening formed therein to receive a tool configured to keep the eccentric shaft and the two thrust drive nuts angularly in phase while rotating the eccentric shaft during alignment.

20. The method of claim 19, wherein an adjustment tool further is configured to hold the eccentric shaft in a desired angular position while rotating the thrust drive nuts.