Simulation – Optics and Lasers

Our range of services

Various laser-based processes can be designed more efficiently and individually, or even implemented in the first place by means of software for modeling and simulation. Fraunhofer ILT has developed, for example, software tools that enable it to specifically design a laser beam for specific tasks by shaping the intensity profile. Thus, the solutions it has worked out are suitable for optimizing laser-based applications in medicine or the laser cutting of glass, metals or other materials.

Fraunhofer ILT also develops algorithms for the design of optical free-form surfaces. With such algorithms, the laser power can be redistributed through refraction and reflection of light and, thus, desired intensity profiles can be generated. In this case, refractive and reflective surfaces can be combined in an optical element and desired power density distributions obtained with maximum light output. Thanks to targeted optical design, virtual prototypes can initially be developed, whose properties are verified with simulation software. The institute uses commercial tools as well as those it has developed to design optics and help verify the lighting function and to determine the influence of manufacturing and assembly tolerances.

The range of services includes not only simulation and modeling but also individual consultation.

Simulation of a laser cutting process.
© Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.
Simulation of a laser cutting process.
Fine cutting - experiment and simulation.
© Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.
Fine cutting - experiment and simulation.
High-efficiency freeform LED optics for street lighting.
© Fraunhofer ILT, Aachen, Germany.
High-efficiency freeform LED optics for street lighting.

Mathematical Modeling of Physical Processes

  • Wave optics (physical optics)
  • Geometrical optics
  • Hydromechanics, structural mechanics
  • Data assessment (statistics, classification, etc.)


  • Solution of partial differential equations
  • Large scale numerical optimization
  • Classification, genetic algorithms, etc.

Software Tools Development

  • Physical optics simulation tool OPT
  • Free-form optics design software


Our brochures offer a quick view onto our service portfolio. Find more detailed information in the “project results“ tab.


“Modelling and Simulation“


Laser technology can solve demanding tasks in many different industries. Whether as a tool in automotive production, as measuring equipment in the environmental sector, as a diagnostic or therapeutic instrument in medical technology or as a communication medium in space technology, the laser provides multiple uses with high productivity and high efficiency.

Read up about the innovations of the Fraunhofer ILT in a few selected industries and convince yourself!


Research with us!

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about general topics! Our contact persons are happy to get in touch with you.


Moench, H., Andreadaki, A., Gronenborn, S., Kolb, J. S., Loosen, P., Miller, M., Schwarz, T., van der Lee, A., Weichmann, U.:
High power electrically pumped VECSEL and arrays
Vertical External Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VECSELs) IV
Editor(s): Jerome V. Moloney. Proc. SPIE Vol. 8966 (10 S.) (2014)

Wester, R.:
Physical optics methods for laser and non-linear optics simulations
Adv. Optical Technol. 2 (3), 247-255 (2013)

Flemmer, J., Pirch, N., Witzel, J., Gasser, A., Wissenbach, K., Kelbassa, I.:
LACAM3D, CAM solution for tool path generation for build up of complex aerospace components by laser powder deposition
Proceedings of the 37th International MATADOR Conference, 61-64 (2012)

Pirch, N., Keutgen, S., Gasser, A., Wissenbach, K., Kelbassa, I.:
Modeling of coaxial single and overlap-pass cladding with laser radiation
Proceedings of the 37th International MATADOR Conference, pp. 377-380 (2012)

Nastasi, G., Wester, R., Colla, V., Noll, R.:
Determining inclusion size distributions from OES/PDA data.
Proc. of the CETAS 2011, Luxembourg, 17.-19. Mai 2011. pp. 495-501, 2011

Thombansen, U., Schüttler, J., Auerbach, T. [u.a.]:
Model-based self-optimization for manufacturing systems.
Proc. of the 2011 Int. Conf. on Concurrent Enterprising (ICE 2011). Eds.: K.-D. Thoben [u.a.] Piscataway, NJ : IEEE 2011. 9 S.

Vossen, G., Schüttler, J.:
Mathematical modelling and stability analysis for laser cutting.
Math. Comp. Model. Dyn. Syst. ifirst, 1-25, 2011

M. C. Funck, P. Loosen
Statistical simulation of selectively assembled optical systems
Proc. SPIE
7427, 7427B (10 S.), 2009

H. Maurer, G. Vossen
Sufficient conditions and sensitivity analysis for optimal bang-bang control problems with state constraints
In: System Modeling and Optimization. Ed.: A. Korytowski u.a. 23rd IFIP TC 7 Conference, Cracow, Poland, July 23-27, 2007
Berlin [u.a]: Springer 2009
IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology, Vol. 312.
ISBN 978-3-642-04801-2
pp. 82-99

G. Vossen
Switching time optimization for bang-bang and singular controls
J. Optimization Theory Appl.
Online first
1-18 (2009)