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Contrast is committed to advancing the technological landscape through the art of optical system design and complete-system implementation. Our experts can provide guidance in the realms of optical design and image processing or can be relied on to provide full, integrated solutions. We offer a variety of techniques to design software, hardware and firmware and to assemble lenses, lasers, cameras and other components into embedded systems. We are always focused on reducing system size, weight and power (SWaP), and we strive to align our custom solutions with our clients’ existing systems.




OpticStudio 16.5, Optical Design and Analysis 
Custom Imaging and Relay Lens Systems
Complex Image Splitting for Hybrid Systems

While there are numerous prefabricated lens options on the market today, many times, the opportunity for customization is essential to meet the increasingly demanding and specific needs of lens design. As a leader in optical design and analysis, Contrast’s lens designs are thoughtfully analyzed, and meticulously tested and adjusted prior to fabrication. We have the ability to design imaging systems for a diverse amount of applications, such as telescopes, cameras, night-vision scopes, microscopes, viewfinders and many more.


OpticStudio 16.5 optical design software is the premier design tool for optical designers around the world. Contrast principal Mike Tocci, has extensive experience with OpticStudio 16.5, and has authored many OpticStudio 16.5 (formerly Zemax) Knowledge Base articles on topics such as stray light, off-axis parabola mirrors and modeling the human eye.



How to Show Detector Volume Data in 3-D
Modeling FTIR  in Non-Sequential Mode

Demystifying the Off-Axis Parabolic Mirror
How to Model the Human Eye in Zemax
Quantifying Veiling Glare


SIMULTANEOUS 360 IMAGING LENS Our proven Panoramic Annular Lens (PAL) designs offer imaging around 360-degrees in azimuth, and over 70-degrees in elevation, all at once on a single sensor. There is no image stitching, and there is no scanning, with our custom-designed PAL lenses. The simplicity of the optical design lends itself to incorporation into real-time video systems, which we have implemented for various industrial, medical, and military customers.

Whether your needs dictate an extremely compact 5mm application, commonly used for medical imaging, or large scale lenses that can be used for industrial pipe inspection or surveillance applications, Contrast’s panoramic lenses capture images beyond the 180-degree horizon line of the lens and are scalable. Our Panoramic Annular Lens (PAL) is much more rugged and compact than comparable wide-angle lenses, making it well suited for challenges such as imaging inside tight spaces or for round-the-clock, uninterrupted surveillance in harsh environments. To achieve far greater capabilities in 360-degree imaging, couple a PAL with our HDR camera systems.


FOVEGON VARIABLE MAG LENS In the human eye, the fovea centralis is packed with a much higher density of cone photoreceptors than the rest of the retina. This allows the eye to see with very high resolution in the center of the field of view while still allowing a very wide overall field of view. The Contrast Dual-FOV Fovegon lens system provides a wide-field-of-view camera with much greater magnification over the central region of the image, replicating the human eye. The Contrast FPGA firmware registration removes distortion from the image in real-time, yielding an undistorted picture with 25x greater pixel density at the center than at the edge, and has been used in military applications because it eliminates handoffs between narrow and wide sensor suites during critical tracking. Each Contrast Fovegon lens system is customized to our clients’ exact field of view, resolution, wavelength and magnification requirements.


Real-time image systems are uniquely capable of processing all frames of video as soon as they’re captured, without any delay or loss of image data. Real-time display and access to frame data is valuable for applications that require instant image information viewing, inspection or additional analysis. We design, develop and build real-time electronics and firmware to meet advanced imaging and non-imaging system requirements.


Contrast’s scientists are adept in custom FPGA programming and HDL (Hardware Description Languages), providing efficient real-time image processing. Examples of real-time solutions include distortion and unwrapping corrections, tone mapping, color correction, white balance, data compression, encoding and decoding and multi-target trackers, all of which can be used in a wide range of industries.


 Electronics Design for Custom Cameras   

JPEG Compression Engines & Algorithms

 Pointing, Acquisition & Tracking Systems   

 Image Processing

POINTING ACQUISITION AND TRACKING Contrast has a widespread knowledge and experience in custom adaptation of PAT (pointing, acquisition and tracking) imaging algorithms for unique, real-time applications. Our very own chief electronics engineer, Chris Kiser, has more than 25 years of experience in developing line-of-sight PAT algorithms for military, industrial and entertainment fields. We have the ability to design, build, align and install complete PAT systems, including hardware, software and FPGA firmware with robust algorithms to enable instant target detection and target tracking through the most extreme environmental conditions. Our PAT technology has been used in various industries, including beam control systems, high-energy laser (HEL) diagnostics, and laser communications systems for the military.

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