The Applied Computational Optics Group deals with the development of novel approaches for modeling and design of optical systems. Our approach is based on field tracing, in which not ray bundles but electromagnetic harmonic fields are propagated through the system. That enables unified optical modeling which reaches from source modeling over various field propagation techniques to a suitable simulation of optical detectors (Fig.1).

Actually, particular interests are in:   

  • Non-sequential field tracing
  • Electromagnetic modeling of partially coherent light
  • Geometrical optics field tracing technology
  • Propagation of non-paraxial harmonic fields 
  • Rigorous and efficient propagation of general fields through plane interfaces
  • Wave-optical analysis of stable and unstable laser resonator including active media
  • Propagation of fields between tilted planes
  • Design of light-shaping elements
  • Program interfacing between different simulation software
  • fs-pulse modeling
Unified optical modeling by field tracing
Fig. 1: Unified optical modeling by field tracing: Propagation of electromagnetic fields through the complete optical system (including source and detctor) by using the combination of rigorous and approximate solutions of Maxwell`s equations in different subdomains of the system.

In 2012, together with our colleagues at LightTrans GmbH, we were able to combine the mathematical concept of sparse tearing and interconnecting with our idea of non-sequential field tracing. That constitutes the basis of a new type of Maxwell's solver with high efficiency and numerical stability. We also introduced the parabasal field decomposition. This technique solves various problems in optical modeling, e.g., efficient propagation of non-paraxial harmonic fields, tracing scattered light through lens systems and tolerancing of optical systems. Furthermore we have developed rigorous semi-analytical methods for the efficient free-space propagation of non-paraxial fields. In laser resonator modeling we use advanced Eigenmode solver, to simulate the optical performance of stable and unstable active laser resonators. Here we use pseudospectral methods for the simulation of the field propagation through nonlinear active media.

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