June 16, 2014

‘Exquisitely Engineered’ Human Vision Featured In ‘Optical Engineering’


Special section in Optical Engineering journal highlights optics and optical engineering for improved diagnosis and treatment

A new special section on Human Vision in the current issue of Optical Engineering showcases optics and optical engineering research into new techniques and approaches for the study of human vision and the design of novel imaging systems. Put into practice, these new approaches enable applications such as earlier diagnosis of disease, improved treatment monitoring, and more accurate guidance for treatment and surgery. The journal is published by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics.

The special section includes 11 papers that describe how optics is used to investigate human vision, how new methods for correcting or enhancing human vision are developed and evaluated, and how models of human vision can be used to design and evaluate other imaging systems.

Several of the articles describe new optical imaging techniques, such as quantitative anterior segment optical coherence tomography that measures 3D biometry of the cornea and the lens in the front of the eye.

"The human visual system is an exquisitely engineered system that can serve as a model and inspiration for the design of many imaging systems," wrote Eli Peli, Harvard Medical School, in a guest editorial in the special section. "For example, advances in optical sensing and imaging have led to important discoveries about retinal image processing, and optical design tools are necessary for improving vision in patients. While advances in optics are improving our understanding of the human visual system, this understanding has also led to improvements in artificial vision systems, image processing algorithms, visual displays, and even modern optical elements and systems."

Along with Peli, other guest editors of the special section are Susana Marcos, Institute of Optics, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas; Stephen Burns, Indiana University; and Joyce Farrell, Stanford University.