When you are designing an advanced optical system thre are several problems to consider. The optical concept has to enable a reasonable mechanical design with respect to size, mechanical stability and mounting of optical components. The optical design has to be checked for interference between rays and mechanical parts. The optical components have to be individually optimized for an appropriate size of the optical surface. In this paper it is shown how a CAD system can simplify the optical design. An interface program has been developed to be used together with an optical program and a 3D CAD system. The interface program can read optical data files, alter the data if required and output ray coordinates to the CAD system. The rays can be drawn in 2D from different views or generated as 3D volumes.
Ulf Handberg, Ulf Handberg,
"Three-dimensional CAD design of advanced optics for an infrared surveillance sensor", Proc. SPIE 1693, Surveillance Technologies II, (28 August 1992); doi: 10.1117/12.138100; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.138100