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  • Tabletop Lens Test Bench
May 2008
Wells Research Inc.Request Info
For Determining Image Quality
LINCOLN, Mass., May 28, 2008 -- Wells Research and Development (Wells R&D) said its new tabletop lens test bench, model OS210B, is a completely modular system that can be used to effectively evaluate performance of commercial lenses for use in larger systems, validate performance of custom lens prototypes, track performance of lens batches as they come in, and diagnose imaging problems, among other applications.

WellsR&DLensTest.jpg"There are more and more applications where imaging systems are being integrated as key elements, from cell phones to vision systems in automobiles," said Ben Wells, president of Wells R&D. "With the OS210B we have created a tabletop testing system that is easy to use, flexible, accurate, and affordable. Among the many improvements, we have eliminated the need for a microscope lens, removing a source of potential error and allowing for the testing of very fast lenses."

In the OS210B, the lens being tested forms an image of the pattern on a test reticle. The image is viewed by a telescope and captured by an attached FireWire video camera for analysis. The system also includes PixelScope Optic Studio image analysis software. The OS210B can test lenses with focal lengths from 0.5 to 500 mm. The base system is configured for testing at infinity and an option is available for testing at finite conjugates. The base OS210B is a manual system but motorized stages are available as an option for 1,2, or 3 axes, the company said.

OS210B applications include:
  • Visual evaluation of image quality
  • MTF (modulation transfer function), 3-bar contrast, enslitted energy
  • Lens parameters -- effective focal length, back focal length, field of view, f number
  • Evaluation of depth-of-field, field flatness, distortion, chief ray angle, vignetting, centration
  • On- and off-axis aberrations, astigmatism, veiling glare
  • Visualization of wavefront aberrations at lens pupil and construction of "ray fan" plots
"Unfortunately, perhaps because of bad experiences with older systems, MTF measurements are sometimes viewed with misgivings," Wells said. "The OS210B changes that by delivering repeatable, traceable measurements."

Calculated MTF is only as good as the image captured by the camera; the OS210B optics are diffraction limited so the image reflects only the flaws of the lens under test, the company said. An inspection certificate is included.

The possibilities of operator error are also minimized with the PixelScope software by entering system parameters into the software's graphical screens. The OS210B includes a certified "golden lens" for setup and verification so the MTF value can be traced to a known standard.

For more information, visit:; e-mail:

Wells Research and Development
15A Lewis St.
Lincoln, MA 01773
Phone: (781) 259-8667
Fax: (781) 259-8675


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As a wavefront of light passes by an opaque edge or through an opening, secondary weaker wavefronts are generated, apparently originating at that edge. These secondary wavefronts will interfere with the primary wavefront as well as with each other to form various diffraction patterns.  
A transparent optical component consisting of one or more pieces of optical glass with surfaces so curved (usually spherical) that they serve to converge or diverge the transmitted rays from an object, thus forming a real or virtual image of that object.
An instrument consisting essentially of a tube 160 mm long, with an objective lens at the distant end and an eyepiece at the near end. The objective forms a real aerial image of the object in the focal plane of the eyepiece where it is observed by the eye. The overall magnifying power is equal to the linear magnification of the objective multiplied by the magnifying power of the eyepiece. The eyepiece can be replaced by a film to photograph the primary image, or a positive or negative relay...
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
veiling glare
Diffuse stray light at the image plane of an optical system that results in reduced contrast and resolution.
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