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OptiLayer:  Your Partner in Design and Post-Production Characterization of Optical Coatings


What's new in OptiLayer in 2006 (version 5.82)

  • The efficiency of the OptiLayer needle optimization procedure has been further improved due to the extended sensitivity to the insertions of very thin "needle" layers. This enables much more effective optimization of complicated optical coatings with large numbers of layers.
  • Rugate Synthesis option is a new OptiLayer feature. This option uses a sophisticated mathematical algorithm that doesn't require any preliminary assumption about the shape of the refractive index profile. A special user-friendly slider control enables you to control a smoothness of the refractive index profile.
  • All analysis and synthesis options of OptiLayer allow now considering cone angle light incidence. This new feature is called Cone Angle averaging. Accordingly a new database specifying intensity distribution of cone light beams has been added. Convenient editing options of this database allow you to specify arbitrary types of incident light beams.
  • A wide set of OptiLayer pre-production error analysis options was supplemented by two new unique options. These are Broadband monitoring pre-production error analysis option and Monochromatic monitoring pre-production error analysis option. These options enable the user to estimate production errors associated with various broadband and monochromatic optical monitoring approaches. A theory behind these options is quite new and can be found in the papers

A. V. Tikhonravov and M. K. Trubetskov, "Elimination of cumulative effect of thickness errors in monochromatic monitoring of optical coating production: theory," Appl. Opt. 46, 2084-2090 (2007)

A. V. Tikhonravov, M. K. Trubetskov, and T. V. Amotchkina, "Computational experiments on optical coating production using monochromatic monitoring strategy aimed at eliminating a cumulative effect of thickness errors," Appl. Opt. 46, 6936-6944 (2007)

A. V. Tikhonravov, M. K. Trubetskov, and T. V. Amotchkina, "Investigation of the effect of accumulation of thickness errors in optical coating production by broadband optical monitoring," Appl. Opt. 45, 7026-7034 (2006)

A. V. Tikhonravov, M. K. Trubetskov, and T. V. Amotchkina, "Statistical approach to choosing a strategy of monochromatic monitoring of optical coating production," Appl. Opt. 45, 7863-7870 (2006)

  • Capabilities of Plot Engine, a special presentation module of OptiLayer software, have been further extended.  
    • Coating coordinate have been added to the list of independent axis types. This new variable helps to investigate dependencies of values versus thickness changing along whole the coating.  
    • Electric Field has been added to the list of characteristics that can be plotted using various types of 2D and 3D presentations. Coating Coordinate should be selected as one of the independent axis. These plots are especially useful for investigation of chirp mirrors and other ultrafast coatings.  
    • Color Characteristics have been added to the list of possible selections of investigated values. This opens a variety of new research capabilities, for example, now it is easy to check how color properties are changing with growing thickness of the coating, how they depend on incident angle and other parameters.  
    • Real and imaginary parts of admittance have been added to the list of characteristics that can be plotted. This opens new possibilities for presenting admittance diagrams. Admittance diagrams can be plotted for all types of optical coatings including absorbing ones.    
  •  Maximum capacity of OptiLayer databases has been increased up to 799 items for each database. Capacity of History and Collection windows used by various OptiLayer design modes was extended to 100 designs. Management of large material databases is now significantly faster than before.  
  • Essential improvements have been made in OptiLayer Constrained optimization mode to make it more convenient and user-friendly. Constrained optimization setup dialog is now modeless and resizable. This dialog stores all settings and automatically restores them after OptiLayer restarting. The OK button in this dialog was substituted for the "Apply & Run" button launching computations without closing the dialog. This allows you to perform the on-line control of a course of the constrained optimization procedure.  
  • Target Editor dialog has been supplemented by a special option providing an automatic specification of the required number of target spectral points. This number is specified basing on the target spectral range and estimated total optical thickness of the designed coating. The new option simplifies target specification and allows you  to avoid inappropriate target specifications that may considerably slow down optimization procedures.  
  • New non-parametric model n(lambda) for the refractive index and k(lambda) for the extinction coefficient have been added to a set of OptiChar substrate models. These models are based on the advanced mathematical ideas that don't require parametrization of complicated refractive index and extinction coefficient wavelength dependencies. The new models essentially increase possibilities of determining substrate refractive indices and extinction coefficients. A flexible and user-friendly interface allows you to control smoothness of the searched wavelength dependencies basing on the available information of these dependencies.  
  •  Multiple updates have been made in OptiRE module of OptiLayer software. OptiRE allows now using absorbing layer materials. Various extinction coefficient models have been introduced in order to provide this opportunity. A set of OptiRE refractive index models has been extended. The sets of models include also the new sophisticated n(lambda) and k(lambda) models. All report windows and General Information window have been updated in accordance with the new OptiRE possibilities. Extinction coefficient window has been added to the View menu to display new results.  
  • Numerous improvements have been made to extend presentation capabilities of all three modules OptiLayer, OptiChar, and OptiRE. The Unicode support has been added throughout all parts of the software to allow using extended characters (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, etc.). Problem directory and root directory information has been added to headers of all reports. Specification of axes limits in graphical windows has been made more flexible.

What's new in OptiLayer in 2006 (version 5.49) 

  • The outstanding computational efficiency of OptiLayer, OptiChar, and OptiRE has been further improved due to the modifications of all software codes in accordance with the new Intel SSE3 instruction set. This provides up to 30 percent acceleration of all OptiLayer modules on computers with processors supporting this modern instruction set.  
  • Various editing options of OptiLayer, OptiChar, and OptiRE have been significantly improved.  
    • Now it is possible to edit numbers starting from arbitrary positions. Exponential (Scientific) notations of floating-point numbers are permitted. All software modules automatically display very large or very small numbers in the Exponential format. Undo command has been improved and Redo command has been added. Now Undo buffer is unlimited and specific for every window with editing capabilities. A particular name of undo (redo) operation is displayed in the menu bar and as a hint toolbar window. All block spreadsheet operations (cut, paste, column editing, grid generation, etc.) are also maintained in the Undo buffer as single entries. A new option in database windows allows deleting multiple files in one operation. Capabilities of right-click menus were enhance d in many database editors. Common editing commands were added for fast and easy access to various data.  
    • In OptiLayer and OptiRE design copy and design paste operations have been improved. Now it is possible to copy a portion of design from one location to a different location. A "summary" footer has been added to the Design Editor. It displays design total physical thickness and design total optical thickness. This information is useful for many advanced options of OptiLayer, in particular for computational manufacturing and monitoring options. A button for the direct transformation of a design from the Spreadsheet presentation to the Formula presentation was added to the Design Editor.  
    • International characters are better supported now in all software modules. It is possible to work with file names and other data in languages different from English. Situations when comma is used as a decimal symbol instead of a period (non US users) are better maintained now. In most cases such situations are detected automatically during import operations. Additionally "Use Comma (,) as a decimal symbol" command was included in the Options dialog of the Import option to cover situations when reliable automatic detection is not possible.    
  • The Broadband monitoring simulation is one of the unique OptiLayer options which goal is supporting coating production by a pre-production simulation of a deposition process with broadband optical monitoring of thicknesses of deposited layers. Various improvements reflecting practical demands have been introduced in this option. In particular, the algorithm for on-line determination of deposited layer thicknesses and prediction of termination instants of layer depositions was essentially improved. Due to this fact computations have been significantly accelerated. It is possible now to perform computational manufacturing experiments much faster than before. An additional control panel enabling you to control the acceleration ratio with respect to a real time of deposition process as been introduced.  
  •  Capabilities of Plot Engine, a special presentation module of OptiLayer software, have been essentially extended.  
    • The electrical field intensity inside a coating has been added to the list of characteristics that can be plotted using various types of 2D and 3D presentations. Various Color characteristics have been also added to this list. Color characteristics can be evaluated for the reflected light, transmitted light, light reflected from the coating back side and for any state of polarization. Color characteristics can be represented as 2D or 3D plots with any selection of axis variables except for the wavelength.  
    • Now, a growing thickness of a deposited coating can be used as a variable for graphical presentations. This option provides new opportunities for evaluating various single wavelength and broadband monitoring approaches.   
  • New convenient tools have been added to the OptiLayer Monitor option aimed for generating monitoring spreadsheets. These tools open fast and flexible way for choosing various monochromatic wavelength monitoring strategies. Access to these tools is provided by the Monitor Wavelength Selector that can be invoked through the wavelength button in the left bottom corner of the monitoring spreadsheet being created or through the right click menu in the wavelength column of this spreadsheet. Picker option of the Monitor Wavelength Selector provides an easy-to-use way for selecting a monitoring wavelength when only a limited set of wavelength can be used for monochromatic monitoring. Paste operation is now permitted for editing of monitoring spreadsheets which also facilitates selecting required monitoring strategies.  
  • OptiLayer Import and Export options have been further extended. The new data exchange format ODX (Optical Design eXchange format) based on the XML format was implemented in OptiLayer module. Direct import of TFCalc and Essential Macleod files has been added to OptiRE. OptiRE has now also a capability to input/output material data files in the Leybold Dispersion Data format and to input designs from the Leybold Monitoring Report. A direct import of SOPRA refractive index and extinction coefficient data files (a free access to these files is available at {}) is possible in all software modules.  
  •  A set of OptiChar models for layer refractive index and layer extinction coefficient has been extended by adding new flexible non-parametric models n(lambda) for the refractive index and k(lambda) for the extinction coefficient. These models are based on the advanced mathematical ideas that don't require parametrization of complicated refractive index and extinction coefficient wavelength dependencies and can take into account additional information about smoothness of any of these dependencies. The new models essentially increase OptiChar potentialities in determining optical parameters of absorbing thin films, in particular ITO films. A flexible and user-friendly interface allows you to control smoothness of searched wavelength dependencies basing on the available additional information of these dependencies.  
  • In OptiChar and OptiRE,  Angular mode has been added to photometric and ellipsometric data presentations. Switching to this mode can be accomplished in the Option section of the Configuration menu. In the Angular mode measurement data editors automatically choose the most convenient configuration for data input. Graphical windows automatically replace spectral dependent presentations by angular dependent presentations.  
  • In OptiRE, capabilities of the Preprocess Measurement Data option have been extended to cover the Multi-Scan Measurements mode of this program. The Multi-Scam Measurements mode is used for the post-production characterization of optical coatings when successive measurement data for all deposited layers are available. Now the user can simultaneously preprocess all measurement data scans by marking the checkbox "Preprocess All Measurement Scans" in the Measurement Preprocessing dialog.  
  • In the new program version the OptiLayer installer has been essentially improved. New options have been added to perform install/uninstall operations with greater flexibility. The OptiLayer installer has been modified in order to avoid false McAfee antivirus alarm. Now McAfee antivirus can be active during the installation of OptiLayer. The latest versions of Sentinel drivers and interfaces are included into the OptiLayer distribution ({}). Extra desktop and menu shortcuts are managed correctly and renaming to the latest version occurs automatically. Bug Report and Send Mail include more information and allow more control now.  


Easy to start

Icons 100x100 1OptiLayer provides user-friendly interface and a variety of examples allowing even a beginner to effectively start to design and characterize optical coatings.        Read more...

Docs / Support

Icons 100x100 2Comprehensive manual in PDF format and e-mail support help you at each step of your work with OptiLayer.



Icons 100x100 3If you are already an experienced user, OptiLayer gives your almost unlimited opportunities in solving all problems arising in design-production chain. Visit our publications page and challenge page.


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