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Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Editor: Franco Gori
  • Vol. 29, Iss. 9 — Sep. 1, 2012
  • pp: 1786–1793

Optical advantages and function of multifocal spherical fish lenses

Yakir Gagnon, Bo Söderberg, and Ronald Kröger  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 29, Issue 9, pp. 1786-1793 (2012)

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The spherical crystalline lenses in the eyes of many fish species are well-suited models for studies on how natural selection has influenced the evolution of the optical system. Many of these lenses exhibit multiple focal lengths when illuminated with monochromatic light. Similar multifocality is present in a majority of vertebrate eyes, and it is assumed to compensate for the defocusing effect of longitudinal chromatic aberration. In order to identify potential optical advantages of multifocal lenses, we studied their information transfer capacity by computer modeling. We investigated four lens types: the lens of Astatotilapia burtoni, an African cichlid fish species, an equivalent monofocal lens, and two artificial multifocal lenses. These lenses were combined with three detector arrays of different spectral properties: the cone photoreceptor system of A. burtoni and two artificial arrays. The optical properties compared between the lenses were longitudinal spherical aberration curves, point spread functions, modulation transfer functions, and imaging characteristics. The multifocal lenses had a better balance between spatial and spectral information than the monofocal lenses. Additionally, the lens and detector array had to be matched to each other for optimal function.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(330.0330) Vision, color, and visual optics : Vision, color, and visual optics
(330.1070) Vision, color, and visual optics : Vision - acuity

ToC Category:
Vision, Color, and Visual Optics

Original Manuscript: April 25, 2012
Revised Manuscript: June 26, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: July 2, 2012
Published: August 8, 2012

Virtual Issues
Vol. 7, Iss. 11 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Yakir Gagnon, Bo Söderberg, and Ronald Kröger, "Optical advantages and function of multifocal spherical fish lenses," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 29, 1786-1793 (2012)

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