An aspheric optical element formed by depositing material onto a spherical surface of an optical element by controlled deposition to form an aspheric surface of desired shape. A reflecting surface, single or multi-layer, can then be formed on the aspheric surface by evaporative or sputtering techniques. Aspheric optical elements are suitable for deep ultra-violet (UV) and x-ray wavelengths. The reflecting surface may, for example, be a thin (.about.100 nm) layer of aluminum, or in some cases the deposited modifying layer may function as the reflecting surface. For certain applications, multi-layer reflective surfaces may be utilized, such as chromium-carbon or tungsten-carbon multi-layer, with the number of layers and thickness being determined by the intended application.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.