Unobstructed, plane-symmetric systems of three spherical mirrors are investigated. Twelve parameters are necessary to specify the configuration of such a system. Constraints are determined to eliminate four of these parameters as independent degrees of freedom. These constraints ensure appropriate first-order behavior and are used to aid in two example design studies—one for a class of systems with the object at infinity and another for a class of finite conjugate projection systems. For the first study, a portion of the associated merit-function space is systematically evaluated and plotted, and the results are compared with those obtained when a global optimizer is used. For the second study, a global optimizer is employed as the primary search tool. Example systems from both studies are presented.
© 2000 Optical Society of America
(080.2740) Geometric optics : Geometric optical design
(080.3620) Geometric optics : Lens system design
(220.2740) Optical design and fabrication : Geometric optical design
(220.3620) Optical design and fabrication : Lens system design
(230.4040) Optical devices : Mirrors
Joseph M. Howard and Bryan D. Stone, "Imaging with Three Spherical Mirrors," Appl. Opt. 39, 3216-3231 (2000)