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Optical Simulation and Design Software

Optics and photonics play a critical role in the development of advanced, innovative products across a variety of applications and industries – from consumer electronics to health care, autonomy to aerospace and defense, and much (much!) more. The Ansys Optics solution suite provides the unique capability of simulating the behavior and propagation of light through optical and optically enabled products from the nano- to the macro- level, allowing for integrated modeling and co-simulation that enables the accurate and robust design of such products. Ansys Optics allows optical products to be visualized before they exist, delivering the ultimate design experience.

Optical Simulation in a New Light

High Level Features

Let Ansys Optics simulation software drive you to the best solution, no matter what your project or application. The software suite allows you to easily solve complex optics and photonics problems and refine your design for best performance, measured both by precise metrics as well as (when required) visual appearance for perceived quality. Significantly elevate final product quality with true-to-life visual experiences and combine design and engineering processes into a single, connected workflow. Prepare and appraise virtual prototypes of an augmented reality headset, optical sensors on an autonomous vehicle, or a cockpit HMI in a real-time, immersive environment– all with the diversity offered by Ansys Optics.

Optical lens


Ansys continues to push the innovation envelope to deliver accurate, high-performance optical design and simulation capabilities for optical engineers and scientists.

Speed up design and improve accuracy with the latest Ansys Speos release. The 2023 R1 release delivers strong enhancements for productivity to prepare your optical design. You can now easily apply Texture mapping to simulate textured material such as brush metal, grained plastic, or other advanced material. Speos 2023 R1 also offers a new Source Pattern to handle hundreds of LEDs for easier setup for multiple LEDs system such as Automotive Rearlamp or LED Lighting. To analyze your results, you can now take advantage of virtual Lighting Animation to control the power of each light source to create, measure and visualize dynamic animation. Speos GPU solver is now fully released with same accuracy of Speos CPU but drastically faster, turning hours of simulation to minutes! Speos 2023 R1 also introduces a connection to spreadsheet to define Optical Lens or Optical Surface for lighting application. User can control each facets parameters independently and eventually with formula. Speos 2023 R1 offers new capabilities for stray light analysis, curved display support, LiDAR, advanced Optical Design for lighting applications.

The 2023 R1 release of Ansys Zemax OpticStudio allows you to take your Augmented Reality (AR) and Head-Up Display (HUD) designs farther than ever before. Simulate and optimize complex 2D gratings used in advanced AR and HUD systems by dynamically linking OpticStudio to the Lumerical RCWA solver. Design great AR optical systems through a better understanding of ray behavior in exit pupil expanders and other complex imaging systems with the ability to analyze and visualize single rays in non-sequential mode without affecting your original system. In addition, this release allows you to easily create and tolerance complex surface geometries in sequential mode, which includes directly tolerancing irregularities on sag-based surfaces and stacked composite surfaces without requiring workarounds. With the Structural Thermal Analysis and Results (STAR) functionality in Ansys Zemax OpticStudio Enterprise, you can now enable or disable rigid body motion (RBM) impacts independent of surface deformation effects for more granular control during analysis. The speed of ray aiming has also been significantly improved when used with STAR, allowing for robust STOP analysis of wide-angle systems.

The 2023 R1 release of Ansys Zemax OpticsBuilder introduces equation-driven surfaces for common surface types, which allow you to expose the equations that define the optical geometry for those surface types and tie those equations to the part file for your design. As a result, you can now store the optical parts in a product data manager (PDM) and recall the equations later. Improvements have also been made to allow you to design mechanical edges on your optics with better accuracy and to add fold mirrors to your optomechanical system with more confidence.

Speos faster simulations gpu compute



Ansys 2023 R1: Ansys Zemax OpticStudio and OpticsBuilder What’s New

Learn about the latest updates and functionality in Ansys Zemax OpticStudio and Ansys Zemax OpticsBuilder in this upcoming webinar. This 2023 R1 Release includes the Composite Surface (CS) property, allowing users to add the sag of one surface to the next surface and the change in optical performance due to surface deformations and rigid body motions.


Ansys 2023 R1: Ansys Speos What’s New

Ansys Speos pushes the innovation envelope to deliver accurate, high-performance simulation capabilities for optics designers. The 2023 R1 Release delivers powerful capabilities that speed time to result, improve simulation accuracy, and expand interoperability with other Ansys products.

Optical Simulation and Design Software Products



Ansys Optics allows you to accurately and robustly simulate your optical and optically enabled products while also allowing you to visualize future products. Conduct precise analysis, optimization, and tolerancing of your systems to ensure that these systems are designed for manufacture and can be built at scale and brought to market quickly. Leverage physics-based light simulation to understand how your products look under real-world lighting and usage conditions.

Ansys physics-based imaging, illumination and optical design simulation software streamlines the design process to better understand how your product will perform under real-world lighting and usage conditions.

When customers evaluate your products, the overall look and details can make the difference. Simulate light interactions with materials so you can see how your product will appear in real-world conditions, letting you see eye to eye with your customers and making decisions. 

Optical sensors are the eyes of any intelligent system. Assess raw signals from camera and lidar systems in their operating environments. Post-process simulated data to optimize sensor layouts on vehicles in dynamic driving conditions. 

Use real-time, interactive and immersive environments to experience your prototype in virtual reality on a 1:1 scale. 

Simulate, analyze, optimize, and tolerance your optical designs based on precise knowledge of light paths and conditions. Design high-confidence virtual prototypes that you can thoroughly analyze before manufacturing. 

Design complex Optical surface, Optical Lens with rectangular, circular or freestyle grid for automotive lighting application, Design LightGuide for thin & homogeneous appearance

Quickly analyze the impacts of structural and thermal loads with our powerful Structural, Thermal Analysis & Results (STAR) technology. Simplify and optimize workflows between finite element analysis (FEA) packages and your OpticStudio optical design. 

Get optical designs to market faster at lower costs through easy cross-team collaboration. Convert complete optical designs into CAD on the Creo Parametric platform. Analyze optical performance impacts of mechanical packaging, and easily export CAD drawings to manufacturing. 

Streamline optomechanical packaging for your products without losing pace or sacrificing optical performance. Design better products faster with early insights into tolerancing and manufacturability. 



View All Ansys Applications

Autonomous vehicle sensor simulation including lidar, radar and camera design

Autonomous Sensor Development

Ansys provides a comprehensive autonomous vehicle sensor simulation capability that includes lidar, radar and camera design and development.

Vehicle Exterior

Vehicle Exterior

Ansys simulation enables you to optimize automotive exteriors by lowering drag, reducing weight and improving fuel efficiency and range.

Vehicle Interior

Vehicle Interior

Learn how Ansys simulation enables the optimization of vehicle interior design, from comfort and noise to the human machine interface.



Rapid and reliable innovation and testing of new cardiovascular medical devices and implants

Autonomous System Validation

Autonomous System Validation

Model-based safety and cybersecurity solutions accelerate autonomous system development and certification.


Ansys simulation solutions deliver the significant product lifecycle cost reductions that the aviation industry demands, while accelerating the technological innovation required for tomorrow’s success.


Ansys simulation solutions help accelerate modernization and optimize sustainment of defense technology from the microchip to the mission. Delivering advanced capabilities more quickly enables defense leaders to stay ahead of the threat.

Nightlight glass lens


autonomous sensor

Ansys + CEVT

Optical engineers at CEVT rely on Ansys’ physics-based simulations to meet and exceed design challenges.

Ansys case study aircraft lighting

Ansys + Safran Aerosystems

Safran Aerosystems develops exterior aircraft lighting of the future thanks to optical simulation with Ansys Speos.



 OPTIX JSC is the only company in Bulgaria that develops and manufactures a full range of special optical devices and systems.


Ansys + University of Jena

The Friedrich Schiller University Jena (FSU), founded in 1558, is one of the oldest, most respected public research universities in Germany.


Ansys + UpNano

UpNano is a system provider for high-resolution 3D printing.


Ansys + Meopta

Meopta is an optics and photonics manufacturer doing business as Meopta – optika, s.r.o in the Czech Republic and as Meopta USA in the U.S.


Ansys + ELI Beamlines

 ELI began as a shared initiative between the European scientific laser community and Laserlab-Europe. Together, the institutions promote interdisciplinary research development using light and radiation from ELI-hosted laser systems — some of the most intense lasers available worldwide.


See What Ansys Can Do For You

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