Free Optical Ray Tracing Software to See Behavior of Lenses

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OpticalRayTracer is a free optical ray tracing software for Windows. The software lets you organize various type of lenses on its interface and then you can see the behavior of rays passing through them. The bending or reflecting behavior of rays changes in real-time as you move the lenses. You can place as many lenses you want and it supports various types of lenses. You can also change the physical parameters of the lenses like radius of curvature, width, coordinates, etc. And the corresponding changes will occur in real-time.

OpticalRayTracer is cross-platform software and it requires Java to be installed on your PC. So, you can easily simulate the Physics of the lenses using this software on various platforms. There is a table available in the software which records the position coordinates of various objects on the interface of the software. You can see the beam angle, X-Y coordinates, source lens name, destination lens, etc.

Free Optical Ray Tracing Software for Windows to See Behavior of Lenses

If you like ray optics, then I am sure that you will like this software. So, let’s see more about this software in more details.

Features of this free Optical Ray Tracing Software

OpticalRayTracer is really nice software for high school students and teachers. Teachers can use this software to demonstrate the behavior of rays on various lenses. And students can use this software in their homes to learn optical phenomena. The interface of the software looks like a graph where it organizes the lenses and rays.

Here are the key features of OpticalRayTracer:

  • Various types of Lenses: The software lets you use various types of lenses including spherical, hyperbolic, planar, etc. Also, you can choose what optical phenomenon you want to use with them. The software allows you to use reflection, refraction, absorption, like phenomena.
  • Change lenses parameters: The software allows you to change the various lens parameters like radius, width, thickness, name, etc.
  • Graph like interface: The software has graph like interface where you can see the coordinates of any point. And to do that, you just have to hover over a point and it will show the corresponding coordinates.
  • Change frequency of lines and color: You can change the number of the incident rays and the corresponding colors.
  • Drag and Drop lenses and Mirrors: To align optical equipments like lenses, mirrors or any other objects, all you have to do is hold down the Ctrl key and drag and drop the objects on the interface where you want. Additionally, you can also specify fixed X-Y coordinates to decide the location of the lenses.
  • Toggle various interface options: There are some customization features that you can choose to invert the colors of the interface, toggle grid view, antialiasing of rays, toggle visibility of tools and controls. You will find various check buttons to apply these tweaks.

How to use this free Optical Ray Tracing Software?

If you have some basic knowledge of optical ray optics and optical instruments, then you will easily understand how to use this software. Just organize the lenses and rays and then get the various details about this model that you have designed. In the results table, it shows various measurements that you can export as an HTML file or to the clipboard.

Follow these steps to use this free optical ray tracing software:

Step 1: Download OpticalRayTracer from its homepage. A JAR file will be downloaded that you can run directly by double clicking on it. After that, interface if the software will open up, which looks like the following image.

opticalraytracer interface

Step 2: To add lenses on its interface, you have to right-click on it and then choose “New Lens” option. After adding a lens to its interface, you can reposition it by dragging and dropping. Use Ctrl+Click for drag and drop operation.

opticalraytracer lens parameters

Step 3: To change the parameters of the rays, like angle, number and color, switch to the Configure tab and you will find options there to do that.

opticalraytracer rays parameters

Step 4: After you have assigned the lenses and other objects, simply see the report. For that, you can switch to the Table tab of the software and then see the various parameters there.

opticalraytracer export html

So, this is how you can easily use this free optical ray tracing software for Windows. You can easily design any lens combination or order on its interface and then it will show you the behavior of rays in real-time. Also, various distance and other parameters are calculated between the process that you can see and analyze. And finally, you can export the result to an HTML file or clipboard.

Final Verdict:

OpticalRayTracer is really a nice optical ray tracing software for Windows. It does what it says and you can easily see the behavior of rays which pass through the lens mode that you have designed. And what I like the most about this free software is that all the changes you made to the position of the lenses, you will see the corresponding changes in the real-time. It is best suited for the people who like optics and love to see the refraction phenomenon of light rays.

Editor Ratings:
User Ratings:
[Total: 5 Average: 1.4]
Works With: Windows, Linux, Mac
Free/Paid: Free

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