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Zernike Coefficients The coefficients of the Zernike polynomial.
Example: Knowledge of the Zernike coefficients across the field is essential to fully characterizing lens performance.
Zernike Polynomial A specific orthonormal polynomial, usually cut off at 36 terms, used to fit the wavefront error of a lens for a given field point. This polynomial characterizes the aberrations of the lens. (Named after Nobel prize-winner Frits Zernike.)
Example: The Zernike polynomial not only provides a convenient function for fitting a measured wavefront error, but the individual terms of the polynomial have physical significance.