Abstract

The modulation transfer function (MTF) of human eyes for different pupil sizes was measured in a group of normal young subjects by use of a double-pass method. Measurements were carried out in the fovea, with monochromatic red light, paralyzed accommodation, artificial pupils, and optimum spherical refraction in each subject. For each pupil size both the averaged MTF and the intersubject variability were calculated. MTF’s were approximated by the sum of two exponential functions. This three-parameter function provides a better approximation to our ocular MTF’s than do most of the previous parametric models (usually one exponential), especially at intermediate and high spatial frequencies. Further curve fitting of the parameters allowed us to obtain a general expression for the mean MTF as a function of both pupil diameter and normalized spatial frequency. This equation summarizes our estimates of the average monochromatic retinal image quality of the human eye for any pupil diameter with good accuracy and in a compact way, which allows one to incorporate the eye’s image quality easily in any particular study.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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