Modelling ocular monochromatic aberrations using schematic eyes with homogeneous optical media

  • Elaine K. White

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Previous research has indicated that schematic eyes incorporating aspheric surfaces but lacking gradient index are unable to model ocular spherical aberration and peripheral astigmatism simultaneously. This limits their use as wide-angle schematic eyes. This thesis challenges this assumption by investigating the flexibility of schematic eyes comprising aspheric optical surfaces and homogeneous optical media.
The full variation of ocular component dimensions found in human eyes was established from the literature. Schematic eye parameter variants were limited to these dimensions. The levels of spherical aberration and peripheral astigmatism modelled by these schematic eyes were compared to the range of measured levels. These were also established from the literature. To simplify comparison of modelled and measured data, single value parameters were introduced; the spherical aberration function (SAF), and peripheral astigmatism function (PAF). Some ocular components variations produced a wide range of aberrations without exceeding the limits of human ocular components. The effect of ocular component variations on coma was also investigated, but no comparison could be made as no empirical data exists.
It was demonstrated that by combined manipulation of a number of parameters in the schematic eyes it was possible to model all levels of ocular spherical aberration and peripheral astigmatism. However, the unique parameters of a human eye could not be obtained in this way, as a number of models could be used to produce the same spherical aberration and peripheral astigmatism, while giving very different coma levels. It was concluded that these schematic eyes are flexible enough to model the monochromatic aberrations tested, the absence of gradient index being compensated for by altering the asphericity of one or more surfaces.
Date of AwardOct 1993
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorDerek A. Barnes (Supervisor)


  • peripheral astigmatism
  • spherical aberration
  • coma
  • conic surfaces

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