User's Manual

In this document you will get a deep introduction into VirtualLab Fusion. Below you may find the table of contents of our User's Manual. By clicking on the headline or red words you will be forwarded directly to the content in the User's Manual.

User's Manual (PDF)

Updated: June 2020


In this chapter you will get a brief overview about the toolboxes of VirtualLab Fusion and how to use this manual.

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User Interface

A VirtualLab Fusion window consists of the following areas: the ribbon with the Quick Access Toolbar, Docking Tabs at the right and and a status bar. The main area of the user interface is used for document windows. A document window is also denoted as a view. Several types of documents are supported by VirtualLab Fusion, for example optical systems and harmonic fields.

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Document Types in VirtualLab Fusion

Find out which document types are supported by VirtualLab Fusion.

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Manipulations: Processing Data

In VirtualLab Fusion there are several document types which store one- or two-dimensional data. The Manipulations ribbon tab contains several operations to modify this (mostly) sampled data which are described in the following sections. Furthermore, it contains Conversions to convert one document type into another

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Catalogs are available for:

They are accessible via the dialog. It serves for adding, viewing, editing, or removing of catalog entries, or for the selection of an entry. In case of selection, the dialog is called via the controls.

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Building Blocks: Media, Materials, Interfaces, ...

Complex optical components are built up from simple Building Blocks:

Some types of Optical Building Blocks contain other Building Blocks (e.g. a medium contains materials). In VirtualLab Fusion each Building Block category has its own catalog. The general catalog concept is explained in Part VI.

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Creating Optical Systems

In VirtualLab Fusion optical systems are defined using the Optical Setup document. It can contain different Optical Setup Elements (e.g. light sources, components, detectors) which are linked to define an execution sequence.

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Sources: Generating Fields

VirtualLab Fusion provides a growing set of source models. Each model describes an electromagnetic field in a plane. The source generation results in a discretized field that is represented by a data array (sampled field) and additional parameters including, e.g., wavelength(s), physical coordinates and others.

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Real Components

This part documents all Real Components like lenses, fibers, holograms,or gratings which are available within the Optical Setup of VirtualLab Fusion.

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Ideal Components and Functions

In contrast to Real Components consisting of interfaces and media there are also Ideal Components. This name doesn’t mean that these elements work without any numerical error or physical approximation but rather that they are idealized by some means.

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Detectors: Evaluating Data

Detectors evaluate field data or even a numerical data array in various ways. For example you can extract the value at a certain point, deter-mine the spot size, or calculate the magnetic field.

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Analyzers: Evaluating Optical Setups

Analyzers evaluate an Optical Setup or a single Optical Setup Elementin a special way, independent from the simulation engines described in Sec. 45.3.1.For example the Distortion Analyzer calculates the distor-tion introduced by one Optical Setup Element, whereas the Eigenmode Analyzer calculates the eigenmode of a complete laser re-sonator optical setup.

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Propagation: Operators for Propagating Fields

VirtualLab Fusion offers a large variety of free space propagation operators which can only be used for homogeneous, isotropic media. Real components can contain interfaces and both homogeneous and inhomogeneous media. Thus they need special propagations.

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Design & Optimization

VirtualLab Fusion offers three algorithms to design the optimal optical elements for your needs:

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VirtualLab Fusion offers various calculators which implement formulas and algorithms often used in optics. Usually, they can be found in the Calculators menu of the Start ribbon.

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Export and Import

This part of the manual explains the most important file formats which can be imported into / exported from VirtualLab Fusion. Some dialogs allow an import / export to their own specific formats which are explained in the corresponding sections (e.g. snippets).

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Algorithm Manual

This part of the manual gives physical and mathematical background information to the topics covered before.

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Contact & Trial


Phone +49.3641.53129-50

info (at)

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