RayLab is an iOS app (iPhone/iPad) for optics analysis. It has some nice features– more than I expected. It’s a nice piece of work! For many practical applications it cannot replace conventional optic design software (e.g., Zemax/OSLO/CodeV). That said, it’s a very interesting product and worth checking out. It also does ACBD matrix analysis. Here
Trying to decide which optical design software to use? Just try them out and decide for yourself. I like how Steve Eckhardt (great guy, btw, in case you’re looking for someone to consult with) summarized their different strengths: “CodeV’s Global Synthesis is an extremely powerful global optimizer while Zemax makes it easy to take control
In the talk I gave at the Short Course at SfN 2014, I briefly discussed the process of optical system design. A common strategy is to start with a published design, or at least a general scheme (series of lens types), and then make modifications to fit the target application. Finding these published designs can
When you run out of catalogs to read, Photonics has some nice short articles. It’s all pretty basic, not too complicated. Good for training (e.g., Optical design software, Fiber lasers)
Ultrafast pulses are formed through interference of different wavelengths of light. Think of Fourier transforms, and how pulses can be generated through constructive and destructive interference of wavelengths with aligned phases. These wavelengths are close to the center wavelength, and spread over a wavelength bandwidth. Shorter pulses require wider bandwidths, and the product of pulse
This is a nice, quick, and practical introduction to optical alignment. A good place to start for training. By Rainer Heintzmann. Hat tip to a recent discussion on the confocal listserv.
Olympus released a suite of new objectives this year, and one of them is this 10x/0.6 NA. This is probably the longest focal length (180/10 = 18 mm) objective you can get and use with a standard two-photon system and see activity in single neurons. 0.6 NA might not be enough for tissue bulk labeled
This open source two-photon microscope system is adaptable for both slice (with substage detection) and in vivo experiments, and is built with largely COTS parts. The paper is a very nice resource. See also, designs shared by the Svoboda lab
Can anyone suggest a nice way to store lenses? Ideas about storage containers and cabinets, and ideas about overall organization are all welcome.
Our friend Christian Wilms tipped us to Austin Blanco’s blog, which has some posts you all might be interested in: Characterizing unknown optical components A few notes on Arduinos, their timers, and using them with rotary optical encoders Long-term considerations when buying or building and imaging system Surprisingly clean +/- 5 volts from USB or
If you like Labrigger, you should register for this Short Course at the SfN meeting. Short Course #1: Advances in Multineuronal Monitoring of Brain Activity Spencer Smith will be talking about the work SLAB has been doing designing and building custom optical systems for wide field of view two-photon imaging. These recent comments provide a
Adrian Negrean, in Huibert Mansvelder’s lab, has been designing and building custom scan optics for two-photon imaging and earlier this year published his work (paper). Labrigger wants to emphasize how nice this paper is. It’s an easy read, with clear figures, and offers a lot of practical insights. It has a ton of information and
Newport has expanded their cage system offerings. We’ve teased them in the past, but this looks nice. Thorlabs has a few components that can be dropped into a completed cage system, but Newport’s offering is more extensive.
Kurt Thorn shared the parts list for his Abbe diffraction setup. He describes how to use it in his blog post, but you can also check out his talk.
Vojnovic’s group at Oxford has dozens of technical notes. Most are concise, and include software code, if applicable. SolidWorks files and PCB files are available on request. Here are a few examples: A motorized 4-way optical path selector Run by a servo, < 100 microrads reproducibility A power supply for a tunable lens Devices like
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