15 February 2013 Visualization of thermal lensing induced image distortion using Zemax ray tracing and BTEC thermal modeling
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Abstract
In recent years, several studies have been investigating the impact of thermal lensing in ocular media on the visual function. These studies have shown that when near-infrared (NIR) laser energy (1319 nm) is introduced to a human eye, the heating of the eye can be sufficient to alter the index of refraction of the media leading to transient changes in the visible wavefront through an effect known as thermal lensing, while remaining at a safe level. One of the main limitations of experimentation with human subjects, however, is the reliance on a subject’s description of the effect, which can vary greatly between individuals. Therefore, a computational model was needed that could accurately represent the changes of an image as a function of changes in the index of refraction. First, to model changes in the index of refraction throughout the eye, a computational thermal propagation model was used. These data were used to generate a comprehensive ray tracing model of the human eye using Zemax ( Radiant Zemax Inc, Redmond WA) via a gradient lens surface. Using this model, several different targets have been analyzed which made it possible to calculate real-world visual acuity so that the effect of changes in the index of refraction could be related back to changes in the image of a visual scene.
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Erica L. Towle, Clifton D. Clark, Michelle T. Aaron, Andrew K. Dunn, Ashley J. Welch, Robert J. Thomas, "Visualization of thermal lensing induced image distortion using Zemax ray tracing and BTEC thermal modeling", Proc. SPIE 8579, Optical Interactions with Tissue and Cells XXIV, 85790K (15 February 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2001168; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2001168
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