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Proceedings Paper

Combined ray and diffraction calculations for quantitative assessment of image quality
Author(s): Jakob J. Stamnes
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Paper Abstract

Images formed by optical systems comprised of many elements are difficult to assess in a quantitative manner. Because the overall size of the system usually is very large compared to the wavelength, a full rigorous treatment based on numerical solutions of Maxwell+s equations is out of the question even with the fast computers of today. Although ray tracing is extremely important in optical design, ray methods alone can not be used for a quantitative assessment of image quality because these methods break down in the region of the image. Here we give a review of recent developments aimed at combining ray tracing and diffraction calculations to obtain an efficient yet accurate assessment of image quality. This hybrid procedure consists of two steps. Ray tracing is used in step 1 to propagate the field from a point source in object space to a reference plane behind the last optical surface in the system, and the first Rayleigh-Sommerfeld diffraction formula is used in step 2 to propagate the field throughout the focal region. Also, we consider cases of imaging by low f- number diffractive lenses where ray tracing must be replaced by more rigorous methods in step 1, and where asymptotic techniques can be used in step 2 to reduce the computation time significantly.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 December 2001
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 4436, Wave-Optical Systems Engineering, (21 December 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.451309
Show Author Affiliations
Jakob J. Stamnes, Univ. of Bergen (Norway)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4436:
Wave-Optical Systems Engineering
Frank Wyrowski, Editor(s)

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