We are living in the most exciting time, so far, in the use and application of the phenomenon of light, as we understand it. Optics is now an important subject in many disciplines, and so competence in optics is at issue. This volume provides the interested reader with a solid resource to embark on learning about geometrical optics, which is the foundation of imaging and non-imaging optics. Professor Virendra N. Mahajan provides a clear and detailed discussion of essential topics for the understanding of image formation.
Dr. Mahajan has significant experience teaching and writing about the subject. He is well known in the optics community and has traveled around the world, lecturing about optical imaging and aberrations; one of his favorite topics is the use of Zernike polynomials in optics.
I have known Dr. Mahajan ever since he started teaching at the College of Optical Sciences in 2005. He flew back and forth from Los Angeles to Tucson every week to share his knowledge with students. I have also enjoyed noticing the fine interest and polite interaction he has with his optics colleagues.
From interacting with Dr. Mahajan over the years, it is apparent that he is concerned with clearly connecting topics in geometrical optics to provide students with a solid foundation. One example is his detailed style in describing and deriving, say, the laws of geometrical optics and ray tracing in 3D, and the evolution of Gaussian optics from them. Another example is his insightful explanation of how the individual primary aberration coefficients of a system of surfaces can be added directly to form the overall system’s coefficients.
I wish that readers will benefit from Vini Mahajan's Fundamentals of Geometrical Optics and treasure it as a favorite reference.
College of Optical Sciences
University of Arizona