CODE V Enewsletter

March 2021

CODE V Version 11.5 Now Available

We are pleased to announce that CODE V 11.5 is now available.  New features include:

Hidden Lens Module for IP protection

The new Hidden Lens Module (HLM) feature allows you to create an optical component that represents all or part of the CODE V optical surface prescription, without exposing the design details within the HLM.  

The encrypted .HLM file used by the HLM surface can be created directly without modifying the current lens, or the current lens can be converted to its HLM-equivalent.

The thickness of the HLM can be arbitrary (but defaults to the vertex-to-vertex spacing of the encrypted surface range), and the rear surface of the HLM can be optionally tilted/decentered, to define an accurate envelope geometry for a tilted/decentered system, converted to an HLM.

Hidden Lens Module Example for CODE V | Synopsys

Surface and Surface Property Related Enhancements

  • The unique 2D coefficient table introduced in CODE V 11.3 for the Q2D Freeform asphere (SPS Q2D) and Extended Fringe Zernike freeform (SPS ZFE) surface types, has been implemented for our legacy XY Polynomial (SPS XYP), standard  Zernike Polynomial (SPS ZRN), and Fringe Zernike (SPS ZFR) surface types. The 2D coefficient table provides controls to better visualize the symmetry conditions for the surface.
  • Support for direct surface conversions (by changing the surface type) has been implemented between the SPS XYP, SPS ZRN and SPS ZFR surface types.  Other conversions are possible as a two-step process (e.g., SPS XYP to SPS ZRN to SPS ODD surface types).
  • A new user-defined surface for a 14th-order Chebyshev Polynomial of the 1st kind is supplied with CODE V 11.5.  This surface type supports the additional off-axis angle parameter and X and Y aspheric offset variables, similar to the SPS Q2D and SPS ZFE surface types. 
  • The Volume Hologram diffractive property that can be applied to any surface shape now supports construction points in an immersed medium.

SpecBuilder and SpecEvaluator Enhancements

A new built-in specification has been added for square-wave MTF.

Optimization Enhancements

  • CODE V’s Glass Expert feature for engineering-savvy glass substitution has been improved to execute faster, and to also validate the starting system against weight, cost, transmission, and thermal input specifications. 
  • An alternative, optional method for computing 2nd derivative information for damped least squares options has been added.  It is based on the Broyden-Fletcher-Goldfarb-Shanno algorithm.  This method may lead to better results for problems where the 2nd derivative matrix is ill-conditioned.

Analysis Enhancements

  • The ability to shift the reference sphere (used for OPD computations), using the special form of the chief ray aiming command (CRA SI), is now supported for configurations using the true Afocal mode (AFC Y).
  • CODE V now includes a set of bitmap files provided by Imatest, LLC that can be used with Image Simulation (IMS). 

Macro-PLUS Enhancements

  • Several new array/matrix math functions and an ATANF function have been added.
  • Database access to individual Error Function Components has been added, which can greatly improve optimization automation.
  • CODE V 11.5 includes several new and updated macros and macro functions.  These include controls for QED Technologies SSIA testability, significant improvements to our 2D Spot Diagrams, as well a utility macro for aligning local coordinate systems to imported CAD geometry.

File Import Enhancements

  • The ability to import and convert Zemax LLC .ZMX files to CODE V-compatible information has been significantly improved, including conversion of multi-configuration information and tolerances, as well as automatic conversion of files in Unicode format.

General Usability

  • Edit > Find (CTRL+F) Support has been added for the CODE V Command Window and all Text output in Tabbed Output Windows.  Select All text (CTRL+A) is also supported.

For More Information

For more details about these and other updates, refer to the CODE V 11.5 Release Notes on SolvNetPlus.

Obtaining CODE V 11.5 Software and License Key Files

Direct-Sales Customers

  • Software and license key files for CODE V direct-sales customers are available on the Synopsys SolvNetPlus website.
  • CODE V software: You can download CODE V at
  • License key: You will need version 11.5 license key files for this CODE V release. This will replace your existing CODE V license key. You can download license keys from the SmartKeys page on SolvNetPlus
  • Complete instructions for installing CODE V are available in the CODE V Installation Guide.
  • To learn more about navigating SolvNetPlus to obtain CODE V software and license key files, view our overview video.

Distributor Customers

For customers working with distributors, you will continue to obtain your software and license keys from your local CODE V software distributor. See the Synopsys Optical Solutions Group Global Contacts page for contact information. If your country is not listed on the Distributors page referenced above, please contact us at for instructions.

Floating License Manager

CODE V 11.5 ships with the same version of the OSG Floating License Manager released with CODE V 11.4. You can use that version of the OSG Floating License Manager to manage licenses for computers running CODE V 11.5, as well as earlier versions of CODE V. The OSG Floating License Manager software is available from the same source that provides your CODE V software (e.g., SolvNetPlus or your distributor).

Note that prior to installing the OSG Floating License Manager, you must first uninstall from the host server the following applications (made available with CODE V 11.2 or earlier) using the Windows Control Panel > Programs and Features:

  1. OSG Floating License Manager Admin Tool 
  2. Sentinel RMS License Manager 

For more details, please consult the CODE V Installation Guide Chapter 3, or contact support at

Having Trouble Searching the CODE V Documentation?

A bug in a February 2021 release of Adobe Acrobat Reader prevents searching across multiple PDF files. Depending on how you access the PDF file, Acrobat may also display an error message about the index.pdx file. In CODE V this issue occurs when opening the CODE V Documentation Library (Help > CODE V Documentation Library) and using the Search All Documents button or inside of a manual when using the Search button in the upper-left corner of the page. If you notice this behavior while using the CODE V documentation, updating Acrobat Reader will resolve the issue. You can alternately browse for the index file, CODEV15\doc\index.pdx, and open it every time that you use the CODE V documentation.

The Top 5 Tools for Designing Freeform Surfaces in CODE V

Today’s optical designers are often tasked with finding ways to correct more aberrations and use fewer surfaces, and do so in more compact geometries that must fit within anything from smaller medical instruments to more wearable Augmented Reality (AR) systems. Setting up compact geometry, with multiple reflecting or refracting surfaces, can be challenging when there are numerous folded surfaces or complex optical path constraints. To help support this type of design work, CODE V offers unique and powerful freeform design and optimization tools.  

If you are designing freeform optics, check out the top five tools that will support your design optimization and analysis in CODE V.

What’s New on the Customer Support Portal

Introduction to Thermal Analysis in CODE V

Introduction to Thermal Analysis in CODE V

Missed a tech talk?  Want to view the recording again? Here’s a list of tech talks that you can view on demand.

  • CODE V Diffraction Analysis Series:
    • Image Simulation
    • Point Spread Function
  • Did You Know? CODE V Features that you may not know about…
  • Polarization Analysis Capabilities in CODE V
  • Rapid Tolerance Analysis in CODE V
  • Tolerance Eigenmodes and Compensator Selection in CODE V
  • Working with Beam Synthesis Propagation (BSP) in CODE V
  • Macro-PLUS Series:
    • “Hello CODE V!” Introduction to Macro PLUS Programming
    • Macro-PLUS CODE V Math, String, and Optical Functions
    • Macro-PLUS CODE V Option Functions and User-Defined Functions
    • Using CODE V’s Macro-PLUS Worksheet Buffers
    • Best Practices with CODE V Macro-PLUS

Upcoming Events


SPIE Photonics West
March 6-11, 2021
Visit our online booth | Request a meeting with CODE V representatives

International Conference on Space Optics
March 30 – April 2, 2021


New Capabilities in CODE V Tech Talk
March 24, 2021
10:00 - 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time


March 30, 2021
4:00 - 5:00 p.m. Central European Time


Advanced Topics in CODE V
April 26-28 and May 3-5, 2021
9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Pacific Time
More information

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