Trace Pro is a program for the design and analysis of optical systems, refractors, backlit LCDs, stray light, and in general for all systems using light as a radiant source.

Trace Pro is used all over the world and is known for its user friendly interface, for the full set of optical analysis features, for its inherent versatility, accuracy and the possibility of files interchangeability with many CAD systems.

Trace Pro is developed by Lambda Research Corporation from Westford (MA,USA), partner of OxyTech, but also in cooperation with NASA for the study of the backlit panels of orbital stations.

TracePro® Editions

There are three editions of TracePro®:

  • LC
  • Standard
  • Expert

TracePro® Edition Comparison Table

TracePro® Licenses

There are two licenses of TracePro®:

  • Single Computer License
  • Floating Network License

that can be used:

  • through a USB dongle USB (USB)
  • through an activation code (Soft)

Further information about TracePro ® versions


RayViz is an Add-in for Solidworks  allowing to apply optical properties to an object directly from Solidworks. This can later be imported into TracePro® for analysis and editing without the need to reapply optical properties already applied in RayViz, saving a lot of time.

  Look at the presentation of RayViz

Further information about RayViz

Support Tools

Lambda provides a series of tools and documents (tutorials, examples, videos, etc.) in the Support section.

Access TracePro ® Section


Download TracePro ® Manual


Download TracePro®

  Look at the presentation of TracePro®, RayViz and Oslo

Did you know?

Edge and Aperture Diffraction

Did you know TracePro® can model edge and aperture diffraction?

Edge and aperture diffraction occurs when light is partially blocked by an edge and is then bent or diffracted.

The method TracePro® uses for modeling diffraction is asymptotically correct, or, in other words, it is correct for large-angle or wide-angle diffraction.

TracePro® will not show diffraction rings in the Irradiance/Illuminance Maps, but the energy under the curve is correct. TracePro® can model diffraction from lenses and apertures.

When modeling diffraction by an aperture, a dummy object will need to be added to the aperture.

This edge and aperture diffraction capability is available in Standard and Expert Editions of TracePro®. 


Did you know TracePro® can use rayfiles to model light sources?

Rayfiles are an excellent choice for modeling light sources such as LEDs. Rayfiles are available from many LED suppliers. Typically, rayfiles can be downloaded from the LED manufacturer’s website.

Each ray in a rayfile can have a unique starting position, so rayfiles are 3 dimensional models of the output of the light source.

Rayfiles can be easily added to any TracePro® model as a File Source. You can define the starting position for the rays and the direction the rays will travel. File Sources can be moved, rotated, and copied, so creating arrays of File Sources is quick and easy in TracePro®.

There is no limit to the number of File Sources you can use in a TracePro® model. TracePro can import .txt, .dat, .src, and .ray rayfile formats, as well as the newer .tm25ray format. IES and LDT photometric datafiles are also a type of rayfile and can also be used in TracePro®. Please note that IES and LDT files do not contain position data for the rays, so they are point sources and not 3 dimensional sources.

Rayfiles can be used in all editions of TracePro®.

Diffractive Optical Elements

Did you know TracePro® can now model diffractive optical elements, also called DOEs? Diffractive optical elements (DOEs) use diffraction to bend light into multiple orders at precise angles. This allows for compact, lightweight, and innovative solutions to optical design challenges. DOEs can be used in illumination, lithography, biomedical imaging, and many other applications.

TracePro® Standard and Expert editions can now model diffractive optical elements.

Three new Surface Property types are available for modeling DOEs.

  • Holographic Optical Element (HOE)
  • Computer Generated Hologram (CGH)
  • Zernike phase

The Computer-Generated Hologram surface can be Radially symmetric, Asymmetric x-y, or Asymmetric (absolute value). In addition, DOE designs created in OSLO can be opened in TracePro®.

Source Builder

Did you know TracePro®'s Source Builder simplifies custom source creation? With five options, users can swiftly generate custom sources. For instance:

  • light source datasheets, like LED datasheets, can be utilized to create new Surface Source Properties with uniform or asymmetric beam patterns
  • IES files can be transformed into File Sources and/or Surface Source Properties
  • Image Files can be converted to File Sources positioned at the system's pupil
  • Non-TracePro® format Rayfiles can be converted to TracePro format
  • Additionally, point sources, rectangular sources, and circular sources are readily creatable

The Source Builder is accessible across all TracePro® editions.

Solar Tracking

Did you know that the Solar Emulator in TracePro® allows users to model the effect of sun tracking for solar collectors and concentrators?. Five options are available:

  • None
  • Aim to Sun
  • Uni-axial
  • Uni-axial & Aim to Sun
  • A fixed focus with a reflector

The Aim to Sun option will rotate the collector to always face the sun. The Uni-axial option will rotate the collector around a fixed axis. The fixed focus with a reflector will rotate a reflector so that light always reflects from the reflector towards a fixed focal point, such as in a heliostat system.

The Solar Emulator is available in all versions of TracePro®.

Importance Sampling

Did you know TracePro® features an incredibly powerful Importance Sampling capability?

Importance Sampling is an extremely helpful and useful tool for stray light analysis, as well as many other optical design and analysis challenges.

An example would be off-axis light entering a telescope and scattering off an interior surface and towards the detector. This stray light can cause reduced performance and a degradation in the image produced.

With standard ray tracing methods low probability paths, such as scattered light, may be under sampled and it may be difficult to get accurate results efficiently.

Importance Sampling allows the user to improve the sampling by defining targets that the rays are biased or sampled towards. A key feature of Importance Sampling is that the correct flux is maintained, so even though more rays reach the target, the results are still accurate and can be trusted. Importance Sampling is also much more efficient than simply increasing the number of rays traced, so the task can be done more efficiently and more accurately. Importance Sampling can save you time and money.

Importance Sampling is available in the Standard and Expert editions of TracePro®.

Photorealistic Rendering

Did you know TracePro® features a photorealistic rendering tool?

Photorealistic Rendering, also known as lit appearance modeling, allows users to see what a light guide, display, or luminaire will look like when it is illuminated. This illumination can be from internal and/or external light sources.

Users can define viewing orientation, quality level, and if external luminance sources will be used. External luminance can be used to see if a display can overcome ambient luminance. There is also an option to show Luminance Maps, so quantitative data is also available.

Photorealistic Rendering is available in all editions of TracePro®. In the TracePro® Standard and Expert editions, Photorealistic Rendering can be combined with Scheme macro programs to easily illustrate multiple viewing angles and/or motion.