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Proceedings Paper

Performance limitations of translationally symmetric nonimaging devices
Author(s): John C. Bortz; Narkis E. Shatz; Roland Winston
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Paper Abstract

The component of the optical direction vector along the symmetry axis is conserved for all rays propagated through a translationally symmetric optical device. This quality, referred to herein as the translational skew invariant, is analogous to the conventional skew invariant, which is conserved in rotationally symmetric optical systems. The invariance of both of these quantities is a consequence of Noether's theorem. We show how performance limits for translationally symmetric nonimaging optical devices can be derived from the distributions of the translational skew invariant for the optical source and for the target to which flux is to be transferred. Examples of computed performance limits are provided. In addition, we show that a numerically optimized non-tracking solar concentrator utilizing symmetry-breaking surface microstructure can overcome the performance limits associated with translational symmetry. The optimized design provides a 47.4% increase in efficiency and concentration relative to an ideal translationally symmetric concentrator.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 November 2001
PDF: 20 pages
Proc. SPIE 4446, Nonimaging Optics: Maximum Efficiency Light Transfer VI, (19 November 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.448806
Show Author Affiliations
John C. Bortz, Science Applications International Corp. (United States)
Narkis E. Shatz, Science Applications International Corp. (United States)
Roland Winston, Univ. of Chicago (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4446:
Nonimaging Optics: Maximum Efficiency Light Transfer VI
Roland Winston, Editor(s)

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