LightTools: What's New

LightTools 8.5 includes new and enhanced features for the design of optical components used in general lighting systems, freeform optics, light guides and backlit displays.

Conformal Surface Receivers

LightTools 8.5 introduces an expanded set of mapping options for surface receivers on non-planar surfaces, known collectively as conformal receivers. New in this version are spherical and UV mesh mapping options, which eliminate the need to project illuminance data collected on complex surfaces onto planar meshes, and make interpretation and optimization much easier. Designers can vary the number of bins in the mesh or set the desired bin size, and use the same filtering, analysis and optimization capabilities that exist for planar meshes. Conformal receivers can be particularly useful for analyzing complex elements such as freeform surfaces combined with LED sources.

Conformal Surface Receivers

Expanded Visualization of Illuminance Results

LightTools displays a raster image of illuminance output in its 3D Design view so that designers can visualize the orientation and distribution of illuminance data relative to model geometry. This capability has been expanded to receivers on most surface types in LightTools. In addition, the appearance of the illuminance data can be controlled by settings for color scheme, scaling, and linear and logarithmic settings, as well as contours, mesh lines, smoothing and lit effects.

xpanded Visualization of Illuminance Results

Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer

The new Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer automates analysis of the impact of system variables on specified performance metrics, helping you quickly reach an optimal design solution. Key features include support for multiple configurations, parameter lists for non-uniformly spaced variable states and non-numeric variables, and the ability to run scripts after variable values are changed or after each evaluation cycle is complete. Supports multiple chart views for detailed performance analysis.

Parameter Sensitivity Analyzer

Improved Freeform Designer

The Freeform Designer assists with the design and optimization of freeform reflective and refractive optical surfaces based on an illuminance or intensity target distribution, source collection angle and distribution, as well as other geometry settings. A new conic lens option provides greater flexibility for surface definitions, including the ability to define a flat surface displaced from the source. The conic lens option is a powerful tool to increase the collection efficiency of point and extended light sources used in compact, energy-efficient illumination systems.

Improved Freeform Designer

Enhanced Light Guide Designer

The design of light guides that are meant to emit light evenly along the length of the pipe can be a challenging design problem. The Light Guide Designer automates the design process, providing tools for constructing, analyzing and optimizing light pipes and their extraction features to improve output. New profile shapes, geometry controls and analysis improvements enhance the tool’s flexibility and ease of use, and provide more options for innovative shaping and improved efficiency.

Enhanced Light Guide Designer

Expanded Example Model Library

LightTools includes an extensive collection of example models that helps designers quickly build and simulate illumination designs. The library has been expanded with new models to help users take immediate advantage of new capabilities in version 8.5, including:

  • Conformal receiver example on the dome of an LED light bulb
  • 3D illuminance visualization example on the baffles and back reflector of a luminaire
  • Parameter sensitivity analysis example on a backlit display with LED edge sources. The analysis measures and optimizes luminance uniformity of the display while keeping LED source placement symmetric
  • Example models that demonstrates how to use the Light Guide Designer to create a square cross-section light guide with optimized spatial luminance and angular pointing as well as a light guide with user-defined profile shape and optimized light direction targets
Expanded Example Model Library

Training Videos on our Customer Support Portal

The following LightTools 8.5 training videos are available on our Customer Support Portal.