I hope everyone had a good holiday season and a great start to the new year! With a new year comes new releases of Ansys software, including Zemax, Speos, and Lumerical. Speos and Lumerical have been a part of the Ansys ecosystem for some time now, so users should be used to this biannual release.
This release, 2023 R1, can be considered a special release for Zemax users. 2023 R1- 23.1, as it is known to original Zemax users- is the final release that will be available for all the Zemax software on what is considered the Zemax legacy platform. Here at PADT, we have received a lot of questions as to what exactly that means for legacy users, so I figured it would be a good time to address these questions to our PADT customers and the community.
Zemax has been fully integrated into the Ansys ecosystem after being acquired at the end of 2021. This means that the existing Zemax licenses are considered part of the legacy platform. Moving forward, licenses will be issued as an Ansys Zemax license. These licenses would require the Ansys Zemax installation download, which can either be found in the Ansys Customer Portal or the Zemax website. After 2023 R1, all new releases will only be available to Ansys Zemax license users, with only bug fixes to be included in service releases for the Zemax OpticStudio legacy licenses through the end of 2023.
This means that in order to access any of the latest features, a legacy license must be migrated to an Ansys Zemax license. This holds true for both Zemax OpticStudio and OpticsBuilder. The same also applies to the STAR Module; moving forward, the STAR Module will be included in the Ansys Zemax OpticStudio Enterprise edition. It will no longer be a standalone module.
The next question then becomes: What are the benefits of migrating to Ansys Zemax?
First and foremost, access to the latest capabilities and updates to future releases of Ansys Zemax. With Zemax being a part of the Ansys Optics platform, expect interoperability features between both the photonics and optics solutions- Lumerical, Speos, and Zemax. In fact, included in the 2023 R1 release of Ansys Zemax OpticStudio is the Lumerical Sub-Wavelength Dynamic Link DLL that enhances the workflow for 2D gratings, as well as the Lumerical Sub-Wavelength DLL that imports Lumerical data from a static file to simulate a grating.
This release also includes updates to the Export to Speos Lens System tool that was recently released. Ansys Zemax OpticStudio 2023 R1 has plenty of other new and innovative features that will be discussed in detail in an upcoming webinar.
Aside from the benefits of a full photonics and optical design software portfolio, Ansys also provides integration to other Multiphysics software like Ansys Fluent, Mechanical, and OptiSLang to provide a robust end-to-end system design.
If you can’t tell, we here at PADT are excited about the potential that follows the integration of Zemax into the Ansys ecosystem! If you are interested in migrating your Zemax legacy license to an Ansys Zemax license, reach out to us at PADT or get in contact with your Zemax Account Manager.
Editor’s Note: The integration of Zemax into the Ansys family has gone along wonderfully, and PADT is fully committed to helping existing users of optics products leverage the full advantages of the Ansys product suite. We are also working to introduce optical simulation to our long-time structural, fluids, electromagnetic, and multiphysics customers. Look for more blog entries from Cynthia and our other support engineers, tune into our podcast, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter.