Ghost Images in Collimation Systems

Many optical systems are, in practice, affected by the presence of stray light.
For example, reflections at the surfaces of each component of the optical system and other scattering processes are causing additional light that interferes with the actually desired signal of the system.
The potential interference patterns which can result - also known as ghost images - may negatively affect the overall performance of the setup and are thus worth investigating in detail.

VirtualLab Fusion’s nonsequential fast physical optics simulation engine allows the optical engineer to include or disregard multiple interactions between surfaces in a flexible, convenient, easy-to-use way. This is achieved by VirtualLab Fusion’s so-called “Channel Concept”, where for each individual surface the corresponding “input-output pair” of channels (transmission and reflection both from left and right, four channels in total) can be opened or closed at will. The software can then automatically determine which paths the light will follow through the system, and trace the electromagnetic field accordingly.

As an example, we showcase an investigation of ghost images in a collimation system, accompanied by another document that provides an in-depth look at the mentioned channel concept:

Investigation of Ghost Imaging Effects in Collimation Systems

The ghost image effects in a collimation lens system are investigated by checking the reflections between uncoated surfaces with the non-sequential fast physical optics tracing technology in VirtualLab Fusion.

Channel Settings for Non-Sequential Tracing

With the flexible channel configuration in VirtualLab Fusion, one can easily control the response of any surface and/or region, to realize the desired modeling schemes.