Machine Vision

Vision inspection systems allow machines to function more autonomously by identifying and quantifying the quality of a given product more consistently and accurately than human workers. This works by imaging the product or group of products and using post-processing algorithms to determine whether the product passes inspection (e.g. reassuring that the lid on a jar is fully sealed). This article discusses a procedure for modeling a machine vision imaging system using non-sequential mode in OpticStudio 16.5, focusing on modeling three main components: an imaging system, lighting, and the product itself.

Authored By: Jade Aiona

Published On: March 20, 2017

How to Model a Dual Brightness Enhancement Film

In this article, we will model a Dual Brightness Enhancement Film (DBEF) with the Dual BEF Surface object in non-sequential mode. To test its effectiveness, we will make a mock LCD system consisting of a light source, a reflective enclosure, a diffusive surface, and a polarizer to analyze the output power of the system with and without the DBEF.
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Authored By: Jade Aiona

Published On: March 30, 2017

How To Compile An Extension Using Microsoft Visual Studio Community 2017

This article describes how to compile a DDE Extension using the Microsoft Visual Studio C++ compiler.
Extensions have been deprecated (meaning that no new capabilities or bug fixes will be provided from that release onward) since the release of OpticStudio 15. We highly recommend that any users that wish to write their own applications to work with OpticStudio use ZOS-API, which is a much more powerful tool based the latest available programming technologies. For more information, see the section in the Help Files "About the ZOS-API" or visit the ZOS-API.NET: An Overview, or related Knowledge Base Articles.  

Authored By: Thomas Pickering

Published On: May 12, 2017

Online Training Part 2: Using the Training Portal

Thank you for choosing to participate in our online course! Before you join us in class, here is some useful information about how the online teaching environment will work.

We ask that participants review this information prior to the beginning of the course. As students are unable to access the online training environment prior to the class start date, this guide serves as a "preview" that will help you learn how to use ReadyTech in preparation for your first day.

Note that this article assumes you have completed the required steps listed in Online Training Part 1: Course Logistics and System Requirements.

If you need additional help and are unsure who to contact, feel free to write us at


Authored By: Davey Dean

Published On: February 16, 2017

Online Training Part 1: Course Logistics and Systems Pre-Check

The following article explains all of the system requirements and instructions you will need in preparation to attending an online course provided by Zemax.

If you experience an issue with the steps concerning ReadyTech, please reach out to their support team per the information provided below.

Questions concerning the sale or registration of your course can be answered by contacting

All other questions and general inquiries can be resolved by reaching out to

Once you've completed the action items mentioned below, be sure to check out Online Training Part 2: Using the Training Portal.


Authored By: Davey Dean

Published On: February 16, 2017

How to place dummy surfaces at the front and rear principal planes

For a complex lens, it can be convenient to add dummy surfaces at various locations: at the entrance and exit pupils, the nodal points, or the principal planes. This article demonstrates how to insert dummy surfaces at the front and rear principal planes of a Cooke Triplet.  The surfaces will then appear in the layout plots and can be used for various analyses.

Authored By: Erin Elliott

Published On: February 16, 2017

NSC Angle of Incidence from Ray Database Viewer

This article shows the steps for calculating the AOI based on the LMN direction cosine of a ray and the Normal vector of the surface at the intersection point.  There is a provided ZPL macro will will automatically calculate this information for the user from a ZRD file loaded in a Ray Database Viewer.

Authored By: Michael Humphreys

Published On: February 14, 2017

How to create a Zemax Archive File (*.ZAR)

This article explains how to create an archive version of your file.


Authored By: Davey Dean

Published On: January 19, 2017

Understanding the Detector Polar

The Detector Polar object stores the intensity data from NSC source rays that strike it. The Detector Polar is spherical in shape but the resulting data distributions in the angular domains are displayed in 2D. And this point can cause confusion.
The aim of this article is to explain clearly how OpticStudio maps rays striking 3D sphere onto a 2D intensity plot. It also gives some details on the conventions used in OpticStudio.



Authored By: Sandrine Auriol

Published On: January 10, 2017

Adjusting Relative Luminosity to Simulate the Visible Spectrum

Relative luminosity is very important in optical design. By defining appropriate weighting per the characteristics of the optical system, we can better model what we would expect to see. This article demonstrates a method of using wavelength weighting to model the relative luminosity of the visible spectrum as perceived by the human eye.

Authored By: Kayo Sugiyama, translated by Jade Aiona

Published On: May 5, 2017

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