Dr. Andrew P. Rakich
Optical Designer at Mersenne Optical Consulting
SPIE Involvement:
Area of Expertise:
Optical Design , Metrology , Tolerancing , Aberration Theory , Alignment , Telescopes
Profile Summary

Dr Rakich began his career in optics as an amateur telescope maker. In New Zealand there are no tertiary institutions offering degrees specializing in geometrical optics. Dr. Rakich had the good fortune to meet Norman Rumsey, a retired senior Scientist from a New Zealand Government Laboratory. Norman was looking for an “apprentice” to pass on something of his life-long knowledge of optics to, and Dr. Rakich, then 19 years old, was a willing study. With this grounding in optics, culminating in a Doctorate through the University of Canterbury, Dr. Rakich has had an interesting and varied career, travelling to most corners of the world working on telescopes, instrumentation and other optical devices and systems. Dr Rakich has had lead technical roles in Kiwistar Optics, EOS Space Systems, Large Binocular Telescope Observatory, European Southern Observatory and the Giant Magellan Telescope Observatory. In 2019 Dr Rakich returned to his home in New Zealand and began working as a consultant for his own company, Mersenne Optical Consulting. It is notable that among regular clients of Mersenne Optical Consulting are all of the companies and organizations mentioned above. Dr. Rakich has been first author on numerous scientific publications. Novel telescope alignment techniques and understanding of underlying fundamentals of optical design and geometrical aberration theory have resulted from this work. The so called “Paul-Rumsey” telescope, a flat-field three-mirror anastigmat with the same performance as the Paul-Baker telescope but with only one aspheric mirror is one example of innovation. Dr. Rakich is the technical leader of a multi-institutional effort to incorporate new technologies of multiple-fibre ADM interferometers into the alignment of the world’s largest telescopes. Through his consulting company, Dr. Rakich continues to provide technical leadership and support in the areas of optical design and analysis, precision alignment, optical fabrication and metrology.
Publications (60)

Proceedings Article | 13 May 2024 Paper
Proceedings Volume 12798, 127980K (2024) https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2691624
KEYWORDS: Relays, Telescopes, Laser guide stars, Optical design, Monochromatic aberrations, Large telescopes, Equipment, Pupil aberrations, Adaptive optics, Optical components

Proceedings Article | 28 September 2023 Presentation
Proceedings Volume 12669, 126690H (2023) https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2675562
KEYWORDS: Telescopes, Laser soldering, Optical alignment, Metrology, Laser metrology, Mirrors, Imaging systems, Visible radiation, Simulations, Photons

Proceedings Article | 6 September 2022 Presentation + Paper
Andrew Rakich, Heejoo Choi, Christian Veillet, John Hill, Olga Kuhn, Matthieu Bec, Yang Zhang, Trenton Brendel, Breann Sitarski, William Schoenell
Proceedings Volume 12182, 121820D (2022) https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2629904
KEYWORDS: Telescopes, Mirrors, Kinematics, Collimators, Active optics, Image quality, Collimation, Metrology, Thermal modeling, Laser metrology

Proceedings Article | 30 August 2022 Presentation + Paper
Proceedings Volume 12185, 121850C (2022) https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2630739
KEYWORDS: Relays, Telescopes, Monochromatic aberrations, Adaptive optics, Image quality, Laser guide stars

Proceedings Article | 30 August 2022 Poster + Paper
Proceedings Volume 12185, 121855M (2022) https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2629415
KEYWORDS: Spatial frequencies, Error analysis, Optics manufacturing, Mirrors, Tolerancing, Optical alignment, Monochromatic aberrations, Optical design, Adaptive optics, Telescopes

Showing 5 of 60 publications
Conference Committee Involvement (10)
IODC: Program Committee
22 June 2014 |
Novel Optical Systems Design and Optimization XVI
27 August 2013 | San Diego, California, United States
Novel Optical Systems Design and Optimization XV
15 August 2012 | San Diego, California, United States
Novel Optical Systems Design and Optimization XIV
22 August 2011 | San Diego, California, United States
Novel Optical Systems Design and Optimization XIII
3 August 2010 | San Diego, California, United States
Showing 5 of 10 Conference Committees
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