Optics for Engineers

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ISBN 9781439807255
Cat# K10366



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ISBN 9781439896419
Cat# KE15436



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  • Provides a rigorous but practical treatment that facilitates critical understanding of how the basic principles of optics affect design decisions
  • Covers radiometry and photometry, which are essential to determine the feasibility of a particular optical system
  • Contains a chapter on nonlinear optics, with emphasis on new application areas in microscopy, including second-harmonic and multiphoton fluorescence microscopy
  • Incorporates extensive end-of-chapter problems, examples, and appendices to help readers solve real-world problems
  • Offers downloadable MATLAB code for solving typical optics problems, available from crcpress.com
  • Highlights the most important and frequently used equations
  • Includes color figures and more than 500 illustrations


The field of optics has become central to major developments in medical imaging, remote sensing, communication, micro- and nanofabrication, and consumer technology, among other areas. Applications of optics are now found in products such as laser printers, bar-code scanners, and even mobile phones. There is a growing need for engineers to understand the principles of optics in order to develop new instruments and improve existing optical instrumentation. Based on a graduate course taught at Northeastern University, Optics for Engineers provides a rigorous, practical introduction to the field of optics. Drawing on his experience in industry, the author presents the fundamentals of optics related to the problems encountered by engineers and researchers in designing and analyzing optical systems.

Beginning with a history of optics, the book introduces Maxwell’s equations, the wave equation, and the eikonal equation, which form the mathematical basis of the field of optics. It then leads readers through a discussion of geometric optics that is essential to most optics projects. The book also lays out the fundamentals of physical optics—polarization, interference, and diffraction—in sufficient depth to enable readers to solve many realistic problems. It continues the discussion of diffraction with some closed-form expressions for the important case of Gaussian beams. A chapter on coherence guides readers in understanding the applicability of the results in previous chapters and sets the stage for an exploration of Fourier optics. Addressing the importance of the measurement and quantification of light in determining the performance limits of optical systems, the book then covers radiometry, photometry, and optical detection. It also introduces nonlinear optics.

This comprehensive reference includes downloadable MATLAB® code as well as numerous problems, examples, and illustrations. An introductory text for graduate and advanced undergraduate students, it is also a useful resource for researchers and engineers developing optical systems.

Table of Contents

Why Optics?
Optical Engineering
Electromagnetics Background
Wavelength, Frequency, Power, and Photons
Energy Levels and Transitions
Macroscopic Effects
Basic Concepts of Imaging
Overview of the Book

Basic Geometric Optics
Snell’s Law
Imaging with a Single Interface
Simple Lens
Reflective Systems

Matrix Optics
Matrix Optics Concepts
Interpreting the Results
The Thick Lens Again

Stops, Pupils, and Windows
Aperture Stop
Field Stop
Image-Space Example
Locating and Identifying Pupils and Windows

Exact Ray Tracing
Ellipsoidal Mirror
Seidel Aberrations and OPL
Spherical Aberration for a Thin Lens
Chromatic Aberration
Design Issues
Lens Design

Polarized Light
Fundamentals of Polarized Light
Behavior of Polarizing Devices
Interaction with Materials
Fresnel Reflection and Transmission
Physics of Polarizing Devices
Jones Vectors and Matrices
Partial Polarization

Mach–Zehnder Interferometer
Doppler Laser Radar
Resolving Ambiguities
Michelson Interferometer
Fabry–Perot Interferometer
Thin Films

Physics of Diffraction
Fresnel–Kirchhoff Integral
Paraxial Approximation
Fraunhofer Diffraction Equations
Some Useful Fraunhofer Patterns
Resolution of an Imaging System
Diffraction Grating
Fresnel Diffraction

Gaussian Beams
Equations for Gaussian Beams
Gaussian Beam Propagation
Six Questions
Gaussian Beam Propagation
Collins Chart
Stable Laser Cavity Design
Hermite–Gaussian Modes

Discrete Frequencies
Temporal Coherence
Spatial Coherence
Controlling Coherence

Fourier Optics
Coherent Imaging
Incoherent Imaging Systems
Characterizing an Optical System

Radiometry and Photometry
Basic Radiometry
Spectral Radiometry
Photometry and Colorimetry
Blackbody Radiation

Optical Detection
Photon Statistics
Detector Noise
Photon Detectors
Thermal Detectors
Array Detectors

Nonlinear Optics
Wave Equations
Phase Matching
Nonlinear Processes

Appendix A Notation and Drawings for Geometric Optics
Appendix B Solid Angle
Appendix C Matrix Mathematics
Appendix D Light Propagation in Biological Tissue
Appendix E Useful Matrices
Appendix F Numerical Constants and Conversion Factors
Appendix G Solutions to Chapter Problems



Author Bio(s)

Editorial Reviews

This book is an excellent resource for teaching any student or scientist who needs to use optical systems. I particularly like the addition of MATLAB scripts and functions. Highly recommended.
—Professor James C. Wyant, Dean of College of Optical Sciences, University of Arizona

His book is clear, concise and highly readable. This is an excellent text.
—Professor Changhuei Yang, California Institute of Technology

At last, a book on optics that is written with the practising engineer in mind. I have been teaching optics to engineers for many years and have often longed for a text aimed at my students … covers all the important issues from basic theory through lasers and photodetectors to the vital topic of radiometry and measurement.
—Professor John Watson, Chair of Electrical Engineering and Optical Engineering, University of Aberdeen

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