A cylindrical lens is a lens which focuses light which passes through onto a line instead of onto a point, as a spherical lens would. The curved face or faces of a cylindrical lens are sections of a cylinder, and focus the image passing through it onto a line parallel to the intersection of the surface of the lens and a plane tangent to it. The lens compresses the image in the direction perpendicular to this line, and leaves it unaltered in the direction parallel to it (in the tangent plane).
- Jacobs, Donald H. Fundamentals of Optical Engineering. MC Graw-Hill Book Co., 1943.
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