Proceedings PaperDiffraction performance calculations in lens design
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A review of the methods employed to compute the wavefront shape, the point spread function and the optical transfer function in lens evaluation programs is presented. One of the simplest methods to perform numerical calculations of the diffraction performance of optical systems is to divide the aperture in small squares, as suggested by H. H. Hopkins (1957), and then to consider the wavefront in each of these small squares to be flat and perpendicular to the ray direction in that region. This method however, presents some limitations, since the wavefront has to be flat within a fraction of the wavelength in that small square. This might not be the case if the wavefront is either too aberrated, or the defocusing is too large.