Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition

Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition

Announcing our 2021 Winners

Congratulations to:

Amir Hashemizad, California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo

Kaylx Jang, Columbia University 

Elliot Kwan, University of Arizona

Yuxuan Liu, University of Rochester

Jace Malm, University of Arizona

Avalon McLeod, University of Arizona

Sara Moein, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Lam Nguyen, University of Arizona

Sebastian Valencia, University of Arizona 

Jacob Sacks, University of Rochester

About the Competition

The Synopsys Optical Solutions Group, invites you to participate in its Robert S. Hilbert Memorial Optical Design Competition, which recognizes excellence in optical design projects completed by students.

The competition honors the memory of Bob Hilbert (1941-2008), former President and Chief Executive Officer of ORA. Bob was a dynamic and respected leader who was actively involved in all aspects of ORA business, from shaping important CODE V and LightTools software features to supporting key optical design and engineering initiatives. Bob had served ORA since 1975, and was deeply committed throughout his career to fostering technical innovation in optics, enabling customer success, mentoring staff, and supporting optics education. He received B.S. and M.S. Degrees in Optics from the University of Rochester, was an SPIE Fellow, and held seven U.S. Patents in the field of optics.

To participate, students can enter an optical design class assignment or thesis work completed during the 2020-2021 academic year using any of our software tools: CODE V, LightTools, LucidShape, RSoft Photonic Device Tools, or Photonic Solutions. Awards totaling $20,000 will be granted. The entry deadline is June 15, 2022. Winners will be announced in August.

View the competition rules or frequently asked questions (FAQs).


To be eligible, you must:

  1. Be currently enrolled in a post-secondary degree program in North America, working toward a bachelor's, master's, or Ph.D.
  2. Your work must have been completed using CODE V, LightTools, LucidShape, RSoft Photonic Device Tool, or Photonic Solutions software, and demonstrate knowledge of optics, optical engineering, and optical design software.
  3. Have not won this competition in prior years.


All entries completed and turned in to your professor during the current school year are eligible.

Download the Entry Form

You can download a PDF version of our entry form that can be viewed, filled in, and printed using Acrobat Reader. If you don't have a copy of Acrobat Reader, go to the Adobe Web site, where you can download it for free.

For More Details

  • E-mail us at
  • Or contact your campus representative
  • Call us at 626-795-9101, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. PST

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