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23 August 2005 Design tools for freeform optics
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Abstract
Freeform Optical surfaces are defined as any non-rotationally symmetric surface or a symmetric surface that is rotated about any axis that is not its axis of symmetry. These surfaces offer added degrees of freedom that can lead to lower wavefront error and smaller system size as compared to rotationally symmetric surfaces. Unfortunately, freeform optics are viewed by many designers as more difficult and expensive to manufacture than rotationally symmetric optical surfaces. For some freeform surfaces this is true, but a designer has little or no feedback to quantify the degree of difficulty for manufacturing a surface. This paper describes a joint effort by Optical Research Associates (ORA) and the Precision Engineering Center (PEC) at North Carolina State University to integrate metrics related to the cost and difficulty of manufacturing a surface into the merit function that is used during the design of an optical system using Code V. By incorporating such information into the merit function, it is possible to balance optical performance and manufacturability early in the design process.
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Kenneth Garrard, Thomas Bruegge, Jeff Hoffman, Thomas Dow, and Alex Sohn "Design tools for freeform optics", Proc. SPIE 5874, Current Developments in Lens Design and Optical Engineering VI, 58740A (23 August 2005); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.617680
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