CODE V is the industry-leading optical design software

CODE V is used for the design, optimization, analysis, and tolerancing of image-forming optical systems and free-space photonic devices. CODE V combines superior engineering capabilities with the control and access of an intuitive user interface. Its many unique capabilities include the most powerful local and global optimization for optics, MTF-based tolerancing, environmental analysis, partial coherence analysis, gradient index and DOE/HOE support, polarization ray tracing, and lens cost appraisal. And it’s easy to share CODE V’s optimization and analytic capabilities with other scientific and engineering applications through its COM interface, enabling a seamless and end-to-end design solution. As the industry-standard design and analysis software for optical engineers worldwide, CODE V is unmatched in function, quality, accuracy, ease of use, and technical support.


CODE V version 11.3 introduces the CODE V SpecBuilder™ and SpecEvaluator™ tools. Optical system designers typically use a table of specifications and goals to describe the requirements and design objectives for an optical system. In CODE V, you can use the SpecBuilder tool to create a Specifications and Goals Table. At any point in your project cycle you can use the SpecEvaluator tool to evaluate your optical system against specs and goals to help ensure that a design meets specs, as well as to maintain continuity and consistency between design versions, multiple designers and design phases.

CODE V 11.3 Key Features:

  • New CODE V SpecBuilder and SpecEvaluator interfaces.
  • Enhanced chief ray-finding delivers improved ray tracing robustness.
  • CODE V is now DPI aware so that it displays well on high-resolution monitors (e.g., 4K).
  • The CODE V glass catalog has been updated from CODE V 10.8 Service Release 1 (SR1) for the following suppliers: CDGM, Hikari, Hoya, NHG, Ohara, Schott, and Sumita.


New CODE V SpecBuilder and SpecEvaluator interfaces help you to quickly evaluate a resident optical system against requirements and design objectives that you define using built-in and user-defined specifications. SpecBuilder uses a Specification and Goals Table presentation that makes it fast to identify specifications that are not met.

Enhanced chief ray-finding delivers improved ray tracing robustness and makes it easier to troubleshoot systems with chief ray errors. Previous versions of CODE V could sometimes find alternate, mathematically valid, but undesired chief ray paths. Now when the chief ray for the first field (F1 R1) traces correctly, other fields will use information from this ray trace for chief ray finding.

Lens system

Feature Close-up: Global Synthesis®

With CODE V’s Global Synthesis, you have the ability to solve real-world optical design problems faster and easier than other approaches, such as genetic algorithms or simulated annealing. Because of its unparalleled efficiency, Global Synthesis can be used to help solve complex problems with a large number of variables and many constraints, including zoom lenses. Run times can range from just a few minutes for smaller problems to a few hours or overnight for complex optical systems. In either case, Global Synthesis has demonstrated a remarkable ability to generate multiple solutions, all meeting the required constraints.

Feature close-up: Beam Synthesis Propagation

See also its Beam Synthesis Propagation (BSP) tool that enable optical designers to model and analyze diffraction effects in an optical system with increased flexibility, speed and accuracy. In addition, the Glass Expert tool is now fully integrated into CODE V. This makes glass selection easier and faster.

Code V Beam Synthesis Propagation
Code V

Feature Close-up: Glass Expert

CODE V provides expert tools based on unique, innovative algorithms developed by Synopsys’ optical engineers. By embedding our optical engineering expertise into CODE V, we help accelerate the design process and ensure optimum results on your optical design project.
CODE V’s Glass Expert makes the iterative design task of glass selection easier than ever before. It automatically chooses the best set of real glasses for your lens design that provides superior color correction (including the effects of secondary color), while considering factors such as glass transmission, cost, and weight.

Application Examples

Digital camera lenses
Free-space photonic devices
Grating spectrometers
IR & UV systems
Laser scanning systems
Machine vision
Medical devices
Micro lens arrays
Microlithographic systems
Projector systems
Space-borne systems
Zoom lenses
Code V Example