Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design

Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design

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By Gregory Hallock Smith.

Product Information: Hardbound, 6 by 9 inches, 524 pages.

The introduction of the computer revolutionized the way lenses (optical systems) are designed and evaluated. Gone is the drudgery of the past. Gone are the arcane methods. Today the process of designing lenses is more direct, much faster, and infinitely easier.

The advent of the personal computer and affordable optical design software has extended this revolution. These latest advances allow more people to design lenses than ever before.

Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design tells how to design and evaluate lenses using computers. The approach is general and fundamental, and is not limited to one specific software program. Thus, this book should be useful for many years to come.

If you are interested in lenses, lens design can also be an exciting and creative experience, and an attempt has been made to convey this feeling to the reader.

Three groups of readers are intended:

College students studying optics
Non-optical scientists and engineers who wish to design optics using programs like ZEMAX® , OSLO® , CODE V®, and SYNOPSYSTM.
Features in this book:

Optical design concepts and techniques are explained
Many design examples are worked and the results discussed
The latest computer-aided methods are used
A practical and intuitive approach is emphasized
Hardbound, 6 by 9 inches, 524 pages
Read a sample chapter: “The Cooke Triplet and Tessar Lenses” in PDF.

From a Review in the Optical Society of America's
Optics and Photonics News

An engineering professor of mine once made a distinction between “computer-aided”design and “computer-ated”design. His point, of course, was that the computer can be used as a tool in the creative idea phase of a design, as well as to assist with the computational grunt work needed to bring a project to completion. Reflecting the author's years of industrial experience, Gregory H. Smith's Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design does an excellent job of covering both aspects of the lens design process.

The first 12 chapters cover the standard textbook topics of ray tracing, aberrations, diffraction, modulation transfer function and radiometry, all of which are needed for a conceptual understanding of the design types that follow. The writing is clear and well-organized. The topics are all covered from the point of view of the experienced lens designer. As a result, Smith also includes material not typically found in other texts, such as his discussion of the cosine-fourth law (Sec. A.9.5), and how to design around it (“... strong negative power in the front and rear elements and positive power in the middle...”).

The next four chapters introduce specifics of lens design principles. Chapter 13, on merit functions, is a useful gem, detailing practical Zemax (and sometimes Oslo and Code V) listings on program usage. Also included in these chapters are design hints such as “Perhaps the most valuable aberration-control operands address longitudinal color, spherical aberration, coma, and distortion”(p. 176) and “Throughout the practice of lens design, glass selection is often the most subtle issue of all”(p. 193).

Smith also covers practical aspects of specific design architectures such as doublets, the Cooke triplet, the double Gauss, and Cassegrain and Schmidt telescopes. Covered in the final seven chapters, these examples—or engineering case studies—are an excellent way for the beginner to quickly master the important aspects of a design. So if you are learning lens design as an undergraduate or graduate student, or don't yet have the years of experience which went into writing this book, you will find Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design a valuable investment.