LightTools Enewsletter, August 2017

LightTools Enewsletter

August 2017

Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer: Next-Generation Parameter Sensitivity Utility with Enhanced Functionality

LightTools 8.5 introduces the Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer (PSA) as part of its Optimization features. The Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer can efficiently scan selected variables over a range of values to analyze their impact on selected parameters or merit functions. This lets you explore the design space, locate suitable starting points for optimization, and select the most important variables for optimization.

PSA is the next generation of the Parameter Sensitivity Utility (PSU) and introduces important new capabilities. In previous versions of LightTools, PSU could scan up to six variables in uniform increments over a specified range of values. The new PSA extends these capabilities with two new modes: list and configurations. List mode lets you sample numeric variables in non-uniform increments, and allows you to include string parameters such as optical properties as variables for the analysis. Configuration mode treats the configuration number as a variable and makes it easy to perform side-by-side comparisons of different configurations of a model.

You can learn more about the features of the new Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer in Chapter 5 of the LightTools Optimization Module User’s Guide. There are also videos on the Customer Support Portal demonstrating the use of PSA:

This tip shows an example of using PSA in Configuration mode. The Examples Model Library contains a model with four configurations representing two different LEDs, each in two different locations relative to the LED collimation lens. (The model can be loaded from Tools > Example Model Library, expand Program Features, select ConfigurationManager, and load ConfigurationManagerExample_End.1.lts). 

PSA in Configuration mode

The variable for PSA will be the configuration number; for the parameters, add the illuminance mesh total flux and maximum illuminance as merit function items.

illuminance mesh total flux

In addition to the two numeric parameters, we’ll want to monitor the appearance of the distribution on the receiver. Select the Analysis > Illuminance Display > LumViewer menu to open the chart in LightTools.

Now select the Optimization > Parameter Sensitivity menu. On the Variables tab of the Main window, click on the Analysis Mode dropdown list and select Configurations.

Parameter Sensitivity menu

Switch to the Parameters tab, click on each of the Merit Function database items, and click the >> button to add them to the Database Parameters.

Merit Function database items

Under Views, select Chart_Receiver_5_Forward_Illuminance, and click >> to add it to the Design/Chart Views. Click the Test View button to verify the capture, then click OK to close the screen view window.


Click the Run Analysis button  on the menu. The Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer will evaluate each configuration, running a simulation and saving the requested parameter values and charts. When it completes, click on the Analysis tab on the left side of the window. In the top part of the window, you can select which parameter to view as a function of configuration.

The Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer

In the bottom part of the window, you can view the corresponding illuminance charts. 

illuminance charts

You can use the Show All Images Button to toggle between a single chart view and all charts. You may need to scroll down or resize the width of the Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer window to view all the charts at once. 

Join Us for the LightTools User Group Meeting

Join Us for the LightTools User Group Meeting

Join us for our annual LightTools User Group Meeting at one of two locations, or join our webinar series. Register online by clicking on the "Register now" button.

Attend the live meetings:

Marlborough, MA

Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Synopsys, Inc. 
CES Training Room
377 Simarano Drive, Suite 300
Marlborough, MA 01752 

Sunnyvale, CA

Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Synopsys, Inc.
Von Neumann Room
455 North Mary Ave., Building 2
Sunnyvale, CA 94085

Attend the webinar series:

September 14
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

  • LightTools New Features
  • Wall Grazing Luminaire Case Study

September 21
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

  • Ghost Analysis with LightTools, CODE V, and RSoft 
  • Simulation of Visual Effects

September 28
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

  • Interesting Ways to Use Freeform Designer

For those attending the live meetings, you’ll get to network with other LightTools users, and participate in an interactive forum with Synopsys LightTools technical support and planning staff. The meetings start at 9:00 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m. Complimentary lunch as well as morning and afternoon refreshments will be provided for all attendees during the live meetings.

Planned agenda:

  • LightTools 8.5 New Features
  • Simulation of Visual Effects
  • IODC Illumination Problem Summary (Live meeting only!)
  • Interesting Ways to Use Freeform Designer
  • Wall Grazing Luminaire Case Study
  • Ghost Analysis with LightTools, CODE V, and RSoft
  • LightTools Future Plans (Live meeting only!)
  • User Forum (Live meeting only!)

Please register by clicking on one of the "Register Now" buttons for the desired location or to attend a webinar. You can also send your information (name, company, etc.) to us by email ( or by telephone (626) 795-9101.

For those unable to attend a live meeting, consider attending one or all of the LightTools User Group webinar series.

To attend these webinars, you will need a Windows PC with access to the Internet. Internet Explorer 7.0 or higher is recommended. The audio portion of the program is delivered over the telephone, with visuals shown on the Web. When you sign into the Webinar, you will be given the choice of calling a telephone number for the audio, or having WebEx call you back by entering your phone number. The program is live, and you will be able to ask questions and interact with the presenters via a WebEx Chat window.

After we receive your registration form, we will send you an email with complete details on how to attend this event. 

Upcoming LightTools Training

LightTools Training

We are taking registrations for our upcoming LightTools training sessions. Visit our website for more information, and to register online today. Seats are limited.

The next training will be scheduled for Spring 2018.

Receive Updates by Following Us on Social Media

Are you on social media? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. This is another way to receive our updates, company announcements, and optics-related industry news. Get ideas for science projects at home by following our Pinterest boards.

Please share these links with colleagues and friends.