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FIO3002 Optics 9.0 credits

The course is a comprehensive overview of main subjects in optics, and gives a good starting point for the more specialized optics and laser physics courses within the areas of photonics, quantum optics/electronics, and optical physics. The extension part is specialized in more details in geometrical optics, imaging systems, optical design, and radiation.

Course offering missing for current semester as well as for previous and coming semesters
Headings with content from the Course syllabus FIO3002 (Autumn 2012–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

Electromagnetic radiaiton, wave equaitons, propagation in vacuum and matter. Diffraction, interference, polarization. Coherent and incoherent light sources. Geometrical optics and image formation, optical analysis and design, image quality. Transfer of energy and information, radiometry and photometry.

Intended learning outcomes

After successful completing the course, the students should be able to:

  • Understand basics of the electromagnetic and scalar representation of optical fields
  • Identify the limitations of geometrical, scalar, and vector description of phenomena
  • Have clear understanding of the wave concept of optical fields, dispersion properties, and difference between the phase and group velocity of the light
  • Understand Fresnel and Fraunhofer diffraction as sequential approximations of the rigorous representation of the Huygens-Fresnel integral
  • Analyze polarization effects and operation of devices modifying the light polarization
  • Understand main concepts of linear imaging systems, including the difference between coherent and incoherent systems
  • Realize main operations and functions of the image processing using spatial filtering of the Fourier-components

In addition to the labs and exam (compulsory parts for advanced course in Optics), PhD students should complete personal assignments (2 credit points) possibly related to the topics of their research.

Course disposition

Laboratory - LAB1; 2 credits

Personal assignments - ANN1; 2 credits

Written examination - TEN1; 5 credits

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

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Recommended prerequisites

Courses on mathematics, physics, electromagnetism, completed within Master Programs in: Photonics, Nanotechnology, Microelectronics.


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E. Hecht , Optics, Addison Wesley; 4 edition (2001),ISBN-10:0805385665.

F.L. Pedrotti, L.M. Pedrotti, L.S. Pedrotti, Introduction to Optics, 3rd edition (2007),

ISBN-10: 0131499335.

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

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Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Profile picture Sergei Popov

Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course web

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Offered by

SCI/Applied Physics

Main field of study

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Education cycle

Third cycle

Add-on studies

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Postgraduate course

Postgraduate courses at SCI/Applied Physics