Its birefringence should be taken into consideration before selection of this material in an optical design..
It is resistant to thermal and mechanical shock.
It is twice as hard as CaF2 but only half as hard as Ge.
It is significantly more expensive than CaF2 and BaF2,but usually not more expensive than LiF.
MgF2 is diamond turnable.
Typeical application:Thermal imaging, Astronomical, Excimer laser applications..
Products manufactured:Lenses, Aspheric lenses, Windows, Optical Beamsplitters, Optical Filters, Wedges, Prisms.
Surface finish:Polishes of 10-5, or 20-10 scratch-dig are achieved at extra costs respectively mainly for UV applications. Typical specifications for surface quality in the visible and near infrared regions are a 40-20 and 60-40 scratch dig in the 3 to 7μm range. MgF2 is diamond turnable.
Surface figure:In the UV and Visible spectral regions, surface figure ranges from 1/10 wave to 1/2 wave @0.6328μm. In the infrared, typical required surface figure ranges from 1/2 wave to 2 waves @0.6328μm and are specified depending on the system performance requirements.
AR coating options:Magnesium Fluoride can be AR coated for use in the infrared but generally without much improvement in transmission due to its low index of refraction and already high transmission.