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Students Win Optical Design Contest

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Aug. 27, 2012 — The three 2012 winners of an annual optical design competition for students have been named, said electronic design automation company Synopsys Inc.

Anthony Visconti of the University of Rochester was recognized by the Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition for his work on infrared optical imaging using Code V in his paper, “Optical Passive Athermalization Using Schott Chalcogenide Glasses.” Applications of Visconti’s project include thermal imaging for night vision systems, remote sensing for aerial photography, and satellite data collection.

Brett Sternfield, also of the University of Rochester, received the award for his work on a machine vision imaging system using Code V in his paper titled, “190 Degree FFOV Fisheye for Autonomous Robots.” Sternfield’s method could improve a robot’s ability to navigate a new environment and capture images, which could have applications in search and rescue missions, intelligence gathering and fast food delivery.

Josh Walters of the University of Alabama in Huntsville was recognized for his Code V project titled, “Non-Sequential Modeling of Multi-Aperture Lenslet Array Spectropolarimetric Imager.” Walter’s design reduces crosstalk in an imaging system that uses an array of lenslets, so that the resulting image of each channel is clearly distinguished. The study will help research the advantages of nontraditional imaging systems, similar to an insect’s compound eye.

The Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition, established in 2000 by Optical Research Associates, was named in honor its former president and CEO, who was committed to fostering technical innovation in optics and supporting optics education. The competition is open to North American students working toward a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree who use Synopsys’s Code V or LightTools software to perform optical design and engineering research. The students must have submitted papers demonstrating optical design excellence.

“The entries we received reflect strong design concepts that were well executed and presented and show promise for optical systems across a broad range of applications,” said George Bayz, vice president and general manager of the Optical Solutions Group at Synopsys.

The three projects were on display Aug. 12-16 at SPIE Optics + Photonics in San Diego.

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