The rotating prisms used in high-speed motion-picture cameras have been designed empirically since their first use thirty-two years ago. During that period, there have been advances made in glass technology and fabrication which have resulted in the production of better images. This paper summarizes the latest state of the art wherein it is demonstrated that prism design should not be confined to the D line of the spectrum, but expanded to cover the uv and ir portions of the spectrum. The prism design shall cover: (1) selection of the average angle of incidence for exposure; (2) the choice of glass or other transparent media; (3) the correlationship between image and film velocity; and (4) discussion of the inherent aberrations, namely, nonlinear distortion, sagittal and tangential coma, prismatic astigmatism, change in back focus due to prism rotation; (5) shuttering action; and (6) aperture design. There have only been fragmentary data published on the subject to date. It is necessary to secure this thirty years’ experience before this datum is forever lost. Recommendation for future action is made, including computer studies for optimization of design.
© 1966 Optical Society of AmericaPDF Article