New Optical Fabrication Design Tool

There is a big, well-known problem in the optical industry. The interface between optical design and the subsequent optical fabrication is still today based mainly on human-to-human contacts. During the design stage is not possible to simulate the required optical fabrication chains. As a result, companies often waste money by producing optical designs that are not optimized for producibility and may be far from the design-to-cost goal. Hence, optics may be purchased too expensively because it is difficult to choose the right supplier.

Entering lens design data on the PanDao Web site (Source: PanDao)

The human-to-human interface between design and manufacturing is now supported by the novel data-based PanDao software tool. Based on design data, it determines the cost-optimized production chain, including information about producibility, the required fabrication technologies, expected manufacturing cost, and literature references.

During the design stage, it supports optical designers to check optical designs for producibility, optimize optical designs for minimum cost and risk by investigating the influence of design parameters on manufacturability and on production cost, and compare competing designs in terms of fabrication risk and cost.

With a given lens design, PanDao supports optical engineers, production planers and purchasing managers to determine the optimum production chain, find an optimal supplier, equipped with the required fabrication technologies, and negotiate a fabrication price with suppliers.

As a result, the tool can lead to significant cost savings in the generation of complex optical systems.

PanDao GmbH is a start-up founded in 2018 in St. Gallen, Switzerland. The software tool has been developed by a team of three senior experts in optics systems manufacturing with profound experience in research and industrial projects. After succesfully passing through an intense field testing by various senior optical design specialists throughout Europe and USA, the tool was launched in early 2020.

To run PanDao, no software installation is needed. After logging in, using a standard web browser, lens data is entered on the website. PanDao delivers a report including optimum fabrication chain, fabrication cost and technologies needed as well as literature references. PanDao does not save any lens data and keeps all information confidential.

Currently, first industrial customers are applying it succesfully in their daily business. This autumn, PanDao’s first scientific publications have been published. (Source: PanDao)

References: M. Tinner, O. Faehnle and I. Livshits: PanDao fabrication cost impact analysis software tool for optical designers, EOSAM20 conference on Optical system design tolerancing an fabrication, European Optical Society (EOS), September 2020; DOI: 10.1051/epjconf/202023803014I. Livshits and O. Faehnle: Producibility analysis of a lens system during the optical design stage, Scientific and Technical Journal of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics, ISSN 2500-0373, St. Petersburg, Russia, No.5, 2020

Link: PanDao GmbH, St. Gallen, Switzerland


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