Abstract

The optical performance of interference filters depends on systematic and statistical variations of the thicknesses and indices of refraction of the layers that occur during production and use. Assuming that their distributions are known, the expected performance can be optimized as a function of the nominal layer thicknesses with the help of strategies that mimic biological evolution. This results in filter designs that are easier to manufacture and more robust to use. The method is illustrated for color shifts that are rather sensitive to layer thickness variations. Its scope is entirely general, and it could be applied to other tolerancing problems that arise in optical design.

© 1996 Optical Society of America

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