Abstract

The informational aspects of optical design have attracted increasing attention in the last few years [see for example A. Blanc-Lapierre (1953), D. Gabor (1952) ]. The closely related topic of the Fourier treatment of optical imaging has been discussed by P.-M. Dufflieux (1946) and by Elias, Grey, and Robinson (1952) among others. The present paper gives an account of analytical techniques which provide a basis for a discussion of the problem of maximizing the information content in images formed by high-quality optical systems, by means of aberration balancing under prescribed constraints on the design. A derivation is given of the principal results needed for this purpose.

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