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I'm looking for a good resource (preferably a book) on geometric optics. I am thorough with the basics (the mirror formula, lensmaker's formula, thin lens formula, etc). What I want is something that focuses specifically on various applications and extensions of these formulas to different situations. I would like a resource that supplements an introductory course in geometric optics while not venturing too much beyond the basic formulas.


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marked as duplicate by Qmechanic Dec 1 '18 at 7:11

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As far as I understand, detailed theory knowledge of ray optics will only ever take you so far, because in real laboratory situations the setups are much too complex to deal with using pen and paper. This means that, in practice, all the relevant physics gets implemented by an appropriate ray-tracing software package.

As a beginner, it is therefore important that you're familiar with all the ways that an optical system can be less-than-perfect (such as spherical or chromatic aberration, coma, astigmatism, and so on), and their physical origin, but it is also equally important that you have a go at ray optics software and try and get some traction with it. If nothing else, it should be fun!

To get started with that, try the question Software for geometrical optics on this site.


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