LIGHT LAB - 2017/8

Module code: PHY2072

Module provider


Module Leader

FLORESCU M Dr (Physics)

Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 5

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 2

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 106

Lecture Hours: 11

Laboratory Hours: 44

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment

Summer resit for written exam. Reduce laboratory coursework and 4 hour design challenge session during 2 week resit period. Reduced computation coursework resubmission during 2 week resit period.

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

PHY1036 Oscillations and Waves

Module overview

The module uses a mixture of hands-on laboratory, computational and taught components to introduce important concepts in optics and photonics.

Module aims

Show how principles of electromagnetic wave propagation find application in practical optical & photonic devices.

Show how light can be manipulated, guided, and stored.

Teach the physical principles underlying important optical instruments and to highlight modern developments.

Give an experience of the design of optical systems using computational techniques based on matrix methods

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Demonstrate an understanding of the wave phenomena of diffraction, interference and polarization applied to optics KC
Analyse the effects of interference and diffraction in optical instruments such as telescopes, interferometers and spectrometers C
Apply knowledge of optics to the design and use of optical instruments KCT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Brief review of foundations 
Light interfence – Huygen’s principle, laser speckle
Geometric Optics – reflection and refraction at spherical surface, image formation. thin film interference, Michelson Interferometers, gravity waves
Diffraction and Fourier optics, DFT, Fourier transform convolution theory, image analysis and processing
Polarization, Malus’ Law, applications, circular polarization, half and quarter waveplates, Jones vector and matrices
Ray optics with matrices, ABCD formalism
Coherence and interferometers- laser interferometry and applications
Guided waves and optical cavities
Optical Instruments – imaging with lenses,camera, the eye, compund microscope, telescopes (reflective and refractive), optical abberations, computer aided optical design (Zemax OpticsStudio)
Gaussian beam optics
Detection of light

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Equip students with subject knowledge
Enable students to apply subject knowledge to physical situations
Develop practical skills
Develop computational skills

The learning and teaching methods include:

11 hours of lectures
20 hours of experimental laboratory
24 hours of computational laboratory

Total student workload is 150hrs, with the remaining hours consisting of independent study

The lectures will introduce essential principles that will be applied and embedded in laboratory and computational sessions.


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

·         Recall of subject knowledge

·         Application of subject knowledge to unseen problems

·         Practical laboratory and problem-solving skills

·         Computational laboratory skills


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         Final examination is of 1 hour duration, with one question from two to be attempted.

·         Laboratory coursework will consist of four individual problem based assignments submitted through SurreyLearn and a design challenge based on optical designs using Zemax Optics Studio and an assessed laboratory test.

·         The computational coursework consists of five individual problem based assignments.


Formative assessment and feedback


A significant portion of the time spent in this class is in a experimental and computational laboratory setting, during which ongoing verbal feedback will be given.  Written and verbal feedback will be provided on both computational and laboratory coursework assignments.

Reading list

Reading list for LIGHT LAB :

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.