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Welcome to Dr. Sohl's Physics 3190, Applied Optics web site.

 Current syllabus is located on Canvas.


The Homework and Other Handouts:


The ray tracing homework can be found on Canvas. If you previously downloaded the file that was located here, be advised that you will need to get it off of Canvas. The two are not the same. You should be seeing a file that has a set of lines drawn on it for the optical axis and the lenses.

The optical design homework and the optical design software (latest version)

Optical design software activities and support:

If you are interested in trying the FRED optical engineering software please contact me and I'll give you our demo code and download. (You must be one of my students; anyone else should contact Photon Engineering directly.) FRED has different (and complementary) capabilities to that of programs like OSLO. The FRED software does ray traces and more but, beyond that, it is able to do the mechanical design work to make your optical creation actually function in the real world. 

Homework Keys (to be posted on Canvas after the homework is due):


New Practice Exam #1 and the key to Practice Exam #1.

Old Practice Exam #1 and the Key to that practice exam (some material on this exam is now on the second exam, diffraction for example). 

Practice Exam #2 and the Key to that practice exam. 

Another practice exam: Exam #2 2010

Image Analysis Software:

NASA’s Spotlight 8 and 16  Spotlight 8 (8-Bit and 16-Bit image analysis software). This software is meant for sequences of images but works just fine with a single image. It is actually flame analysis software but, again, will do some nice data analysis on any image.

I strongly suggest the 16-Bit software unless you are having problems of some funny sort.

Spotlight 8 Users Guide

Interactive Demos: Use your browser's back button to return to this page. Preliminary notes:

1. Do not simply run the application and move on. You should watch the application closely and study what happens. Change the parameters and watch for the results of the change. Read the short notes with most of the applets to help you get the most out of the time you spend working with that demonstration. Generally, you can use the mouse to control the programs.

2. You will need to use a computer that has a Java capable browser. Most of the computer labs on campus should work OK for this. If you have problems, please let me know about it.

3. There is an entire web site dedicated to optics animations and images. This site is called The Optics Project (TOP) and is very graphics intensive. There are modules on diffraction, polarization, you name it. I highly recommend this site! Note, access this site from a computer with a fast connection to the net.

Various optics physlets, many are unique and quite good.

Philliip Dukes Applets site.

Many applets by Fu-Kwun Hwang - really good!

Fermat's Principle:

Reflection and Refraction demos:

Thin Lens Demos:

Light Measurement and Sources:

 Physical Optics:

Quantum Optics:

Applications of Optics:

Cool, Fun and/or Useful Links: 

All sorts of interesting links can be found at the Light Machinery web site. Topics range from glass to history to etalons to Java applets to you name it. They also have an online library of optics and a lot of neat optics calculations. These can be found at: 

Spectroscopy net education page on detectors and other interesting stuff: 

Ever wonder about the weird things you sometimes see in the sky? Here is a site devoted to Atmospheric Optics.

How to read a Vernier scale. (By Fu-Kwun Hwang.)

Lots of cool optics applets at 

Lots of cool physics applets.

Lots of cool physics applets by Dr. Phillip Dukes

Physics Math and Engineering applets by Paul Falstad.

LEDs Magazine 


Send Dr. Sohl a message at jsohl "at" weber "dot" edu (The email address is written this way to help reduce the amount of spam I get, sorry for the inconvenience.)

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