Imaging Tool Improves Manufacturing Process of Novel Optical Lens

Researchers at the University of Rochester have applied a sophisticated imaging technique - Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) - to obtain the first 3D, high-resolution pictures of a recently developed type of optical lens. The promising new lens is called Spherical Gradient in Refractive INdex (S-GRIN) and has many potential applications, such as lightweight single-lens cameras, night-vision goggles, and ball lenses for solar collectors. S-GRINs consist of thousands of layers of compressed plastic bent into a lens-type shape. By using OCT, the researchers were able to look at each of these layers individually, and pinpoint some areas of the manufacturing process that could be improved.