Welcome to the Autumn 2015 edition of 'Lens Innovation' - a periodic eNewsletter from Resolve Optics Ltd. to keep you informed about the latest technological developments, applications advances and breaking news in the optical design and manufacture industry.

If a particular feature interests you do not hesitate to contact us or follow the link for further information. We welcome your feedback.

Mark Pontin (Managing Director)

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In this feature Resolve Optics offers its view on areas of topicality within the optics industry, we welcome your feedback.
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The Importance of Specifying Your Lens Correctly

By Mark Pontin, Managing Director

By the very nature of the myriad of applications in which lenses are used, producing an optimised optical solution tailored to suit each customer’s needs requires a careful strategic approach.

Adopting a custom lens design has traditionally been viewed by many as a more expensive option than selecting an 'off-the-shelf' lens. At Resolve Optics we work with our customers to keep design and development costs to a minimum. A critical step in the process of keeping costs down is to specify your lens correctly. Our team of optical designers and engineers work closely with customers to understand their application fully. This investment of time enables us to specify the lens correctly for your specific needs and most importantly to ensure that you understand the specification.

The main aim of our well proven approach to custom lens design and manufacture is to get the design through prototyping to production with the minimum of fuss so making sure the lens meets or exceeds the specification at all points throughout prototyping and production. This attention to detail ensures the customer of a quality product at the best possible price and in the shortest possible time.

To learn more about custom OEM lens design and manufacture at Resolve Optics please watch this video - http://www.resolveoptics.com/oem-design-and-manufacture.html

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Information Guidelines

Measuring the Resolution of a Lens / Lens System

In this occasional 'How To' feature, the technical team at Resolve Optics provide you with useful instructions, hints and tips to assist you in your daily work.

The two methods most commonly used to measure the resolution of a lens / lens system are using Limiting Resolution and MTF (Modulation Transfer Function) techniques.

Limiting Resolution is the test that is most commonly used to test the resolution of production batches of lenses. The Limiting Resolution test is carried out by projecting a USAF 1951 chart through the lens and onto a screen and then recording the last group and element that can be seen as clear black and white bars horizontal and vertical. This corresponds to an MTF contrast of 5% to 10% at this limiting spatial frequency which would normally be a significantly greater frequency than required by the system specification. The Limiting Resolution test is preferred as a production test as it provides greater diagnostics for issues such as centering, aberrations and defocusing.

MTF testing is more of a Go / No Go test and consequently is preferred as a method of qualifying that a lens is achieving its target design resolution. Because the set-up of an MTF test is very critical it does readily not lend itself to production testing. Once you have the MTF test set-up for the lens being tested the software will then tell you what percentage of MTF you have at the designated spatial frequency. For example the lens specification may say that resolution is to be >50% contrast at 80 cycles/mm. Any lens tested that fails to achieve at least 50% MTF will not pass test and therefore will require rework. Unfortunately, the MTF test provides very little diagnostic information that might help to identify why the lens is not passing the resolution test.

For further information on measuring the resolutions of a lens or lens system please contact Resolve Optics.

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Technology Forum

Why High Resolution Cameras/Sensors Require Multi Element Lenses

It is a strange fact in optical design that the higher the resolution requirement the greater the number of elements (lenses) required in the system.

The reason for this comes down to correcting the residual aberrations which in a high resolution optical system are now very small but still need to be dealt with. Aberrations, if not corrected, will appear as colour fringing or a fuzzy image that is never fully in focus. In order to deal with these aberrations the optical designer needs to create “degrees of freedom”. These degrees of freedom are created by having more surfaces, air spaces and different materials within the lens design that enable the designer to correct and control the residual aberrations and enable the system to transmit a high resolution image to the sensor.

As the demand for higher and higher image resolution continues the knock-on effect is therefore increased complexity of lens design. It is important to remember that the lens system is a critical component of any camera or sensor. It is the lens system that creates the image. If the lens you choose for your application does not transmit the resolution required by the camera / sensor then the best you can achieve is a degraded image. Your top of the range 4k camera can only recreate the image quality provided to it by the lens you use with it.

For further information on specialist lens design for high resolution applications please contact Resolve Optics.

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Product Focus

Model 346: a Radiation-Hard Lens for Colour Sensors

Only in recent years have colour Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) sensors been developed that can withstand the effects of radiation to any level that could be used in the inspection of radioactive sites. These sensors are still not as radiation hard as a tube camera but they can now withstand enough radiation to enable them to be used in areas of low and mid-range radiation levels. However for any camera lens to survive even quite low levels of radiation, without degradation, they should be produced from non-browning cerium-doped glass. Unfortunately most non-browning glasses are yellow tinted which gives colour images acquired by CMOS cameras a yellow appearance.

To provide a solution to this problem, the Resolve Optics Model 346 lens was designed using specially selected glasses with the least amount of yellow tint so that the image would be as natural as possible while still retaining non-browning performance in environments subject to radiation. The Model 346 lens uses special glass that can withstand long-term exposure to radiation up to a dose of 100 million rad and temperatures to 55°C without discoloration. Operating up to f/2 it provides high image resolution and minimum geometric distortion from 400 to 750nm, and it can image objects from 50mm to infinity without using add-on adapters. The Model 346 lens is designed for optimised use with 15mm diagonal colour CMOS sensors.

For further information on the Model 346 please contact markpontin@resolveoptics.com


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Case Study

In this feature we share with you how Resolve Optics specialist lenses and lens systems have helped organisations solve problems and gain competitive edge.

Enabling High Speed UV Imaging

A leading high speed camera manufacturer turned to Resolve Optics as suitable 'off-the-shelf' UV optical components were not available or did not match their UV intensifier / sensor resulting in a significant loss in throughput, resolution and spectral range covered. Working closely with the high speed camera supplier, Resolve Optics designed a novel optical module that allowed significant throughput in the target UV wavelength range. Using proprietary UV antireflection multi-layer coatings the high speed camera beamsplitter achieves wide spectral coverage (200 to 600nm) and greater than 99% transmission per surface. Using the new UV optical module and UV ICCD has enabled the high speed camera to optimally operate in the 230-400nm region allowing scientists to study transient UV phenomena effectively for the first time.

For further information on specialist lenses for the UV, IR and SWIR spectral region please visit www.resolveoptics.com/uv-ir-swir-lenses or contact Resolve Optics on telephone +44-1494-777100 or sales@resolveoptics.com.

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Win a High Definition Z10 Motorised Zoom Lens

Resolve Optics announces a free-entry competition for organisations to win one of their market-leading Z10 high definition zoom lenses.

The Z10 high definition motorised zoom lens is ultra compact with dimensions of just 45 x 45 x 98.3 mm including the C-mount thread. Although the lens is ultra compact it has big lens performance with an unbeatable close focus of 450 mm. The performance of the lens is enhanced through the use of low dispersion glass. The zoom and focus movements utilises proprietary floating cell technology producing a smooth, light movement ensuring excellent performance throughout the zoom range.

What really makes the Z10 really stand out from the crowd is its versatility. Due to a unique user interchangeable rear cell this lens can be adapted to work with sensor formats from 1/3” up to and including 2/3” single and 3CCD. When fitted with a 1/3” format rear cell the lens will have a focal length of 7.5 to 75 mm. Change to a 2/3” format rear cell and you will have a focal length of 14 to 140mm. On top of the ultra-compact size, superb performance and unique image format flexibility the Z10 also has built in topside and back focus adjustment to make setting up as simple as it could possibly be. Proven in a wide range of applications the Z10 is a true asset that enables sensors deliver the full benefits of high definition imaging in a compact envelope.

To enter the competition please visit www.resolveoptics.com/winZ10 and tell us about the application(s) that you would intend to use the Z10 for. The winner of this competition will be selected by a prize draw and announced on www.resolveoptics.com on or after 15th January 2016.

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Global Optics News

We have trawled the internet to bring to you some topical breaking news items relating to the photonics / imaging industry that we hope you will find of interest. Happy reading !

Making 3D Objects Disappear

Researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have devised an ultra-thin invisibility 'skin' cloak that can conform to the shape of an object and conceal it from detection with visible light. Although this cloak is only microscopic in size, the principles behind the technology should enable it to be scaled-up to conceal macroscopic items as well.

For full article click here.

Global photonics trade to hit $182 billion

The value of annual sales in the global photonics market has been revised upwards to $182bn, according to new analysis by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics. The new results were presented by SPIE at the recent Optics+Photonics Expo in San Diego, USA.

For full article click here.

German Photonics Industry Report

A recent report on www.optik-photonik.de illustrates dynamic growth in core areas of the German Photonics industry. Production volume is said to have reached 30 billion Euro with stable growth expected.

For full article click here.

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Resolve Optics launches new device
'responsive' website

Globally the use of smartphone and tablets for internet searching is rapidly increasing and consequently so does the importance of mobile-friendly websites. In recognition of this trend – Resolve Optics has launched a new device responsive website at www.resolveoptics.com. The design of the new responsive website makes it super flexible, and being fully visible on all types of devices (PC, tablet, smartphone) makes it an excellent user experience for all visitors to www.resolveoptics.com. Why not try it out now !

Major Order for Radiation Resistant Zoom Lenses

Resolve Optics has received its single largest ever order for non-browning zoom lenses from Visatec GmbH (www.visatec.net) for integration into their VT 4065 and 506 high-radiation resistant tube cameras. Visatec high-radiation resistant tube cameras with integrated LED-Lighting and non-browning glass are designed for visual inspections in nuclear areas. Applications for these cameras include inspection of fuel elements, pressure vessels and nuclear cores as well as inspection of loading and offloading of nuclear materials.

For further information on non-browning lenses please visit http://www.resolveoptics.com/non-browning-lenses.html.

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Visit us at Photonex 2015

Stand E02

Photonex is the UK's largest showcase event dedicated to photonics and light technologies. Based at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry - the 2015 event, taking place on October 14th and 15th, provides you the opportunity to meet with Resolve Optics staff in person. If you’d like us to send you a VIP entry ticket please contact us now at sales@resolveoptics.com.

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Resolve Optics Ltd, Asheridge Road, Chesham, Buckinghamshire HP5 2PT, UK.
T: +44 (0) 1494 777100 - F: +44 (0) 1494 775201 - E: sales@resolveoptics.com