Short Course on DVD: Exploring Optical Aberrations

DVDs Available

Individual Use
$600 USD
Site License
$3,000 USD
DVD (4 discs)
6 hours, 20 minutes
Virendra Mahajan

The quality of an optical system is determined by its aberrations. This course will explore the effect of aberrations on image quality. Starting with the Airy pattern, we explore the basic aberrations of optical systems and discuss how they affect central irradiance on a target, energy on a detector and line of sight of a system. The importance of the use of Zernike polynomials in optical testing and design, spot diagrams in optical system analysis, and Strehl ratio for aberration tolerance will be covered. The effect of random image motion and random aberrations as in atmospheric turbulence, and imaging with annular and Gaussian pupils are also discussed.

Intended Audience: 

This course is intended for anyone interested in acquiring a working knowledge of aberrations. Those who have a background in lens and optical system design or optical testing will benefit from this course. Moreover, managers and system engineers will find this course helpful in communicating effectively with optical engineers and designers.

Learning Objectives: 

This course will enable the attendees to:

  • Acquire a working knowledge of aberrations and their effect on energy on detector, line-of-sight error and MTF.
  • Determine aberration tolerance based on Strehl ratio and Rayleigh’s quarter-wave rule.
  • Specify fabrication and assembly errors based on a certain aberration tolerance.
  • Understand the significance and use of the Zernike polynomials in optical design and testing.
  • Develop an effective working interface between system engineers/engineering managers and optical designers.
Course Outline: 

Aberration-Free Image with Circular Pupils

  • Airy pattern, encircled and ensquared powers

Ray Geometrical Image

  • Wave and ray aberrations
  • Defocus and tilt aberrations
  • Primary aberrations
  • Effect of stop shift
  • Spot size for primary aberrations
  • Depth of focus
  • Aberration balancing
  • Golden rule of optical design
  • Interferograms for primary aberrations
  • Chromatic aberrations
  • Imaging by a thin lens
  • Imaging by an achromatic doublet

Wave Diffraction Image

  • Effect of aberrations on the Airy pattern
  • Strehl ratio and aberration tolerance
  • Rayleigh’s quarter-wave rule
  • Aberration balancing
  • Fabrication error and tolerance
  • Zernike circle polynomials
  • Seidel coefficients in optical testing
  • Beam focusing and depth of focus
  • Photographic camera
  • Laser transmitter
  • Axial irradiance of an aberrated beam
  • PSFs for primary aberrations
  • PSF approximated by a Gaussian
  • Line of sight of an aberrated system
  • Optical transfer function
  • Contrast reversal
  • Hopkins ratio and aberration tolerance

Imaging with Annular Pupils

  • Aberration-free PSF
  • Encircled and ensquared powers
  • Primary aberrations and aberration balancing
  • Zernike annular polynomials
  • Aberrated PSFs
  • Line of sight

Deterministic and Random Aberrations

  • Random image motion
  • Transverse image motion
  • Longitudinal image motion
  • Imaging through atmospheric turbulence

Imaging with Gaussian Pupils

  • PSF and OTF
  • Primary aberrations and aberration balancing
  • Zernike-Gauss polynomials
  • Strehl ratio
  • Line of sight

Wavefront Analysis in Optical Design

  • Systems with noncircular pupils

Cindy Robertson

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