Tunable Lenses in 16 mm or 30 mm Cage Plates


  • TLens®* Tunable Lens Has Variable Focus from 10 or 20 cm to Infinity
  • Compatible with Thorlabs’ Piezo Controllers
  • Mounted in 16 or 30 mm Cage Plates

VL19C

Tunable Lens with 20 cm Minimum Focal Length, Mounted in 30 mm Cage Plate with SM1 Threading and 8-32 Taps

VL19S

Tunable Lens with 20 cm Minimum Focal Length, Mounted in 16 mm Cage Plate with SM05 Threading and 4-40 Taps

VL15S

Tunable Lens with 10 cm Minimum Focal Length, Mounted in 16 mm Cage Plate with SM05 Threading and 4-40 Taps

VL15C

Tunable Lens with 10 cm Minimum Focal Length, Mounted in 30 mm Cage Plate with SM1 Threading and 8-32 Taps

*TLens® is a registered trademark of poLight ASA.

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Features

  • Focal Range: 10 cm (VL15 Series) or 20 cm (VL19 Series) to Infinity
  • Available in Two Cage Mount Options:
  • Response Time: <1 ms to Reach 63.2% of Final Asymptotic Value
  • Ø1.55 mm (VL15 Series) or Ø1.90 mm (VL19 Series) Clear Aperture
  • Ultra-Low Power Consumption: <1 mW
  • Compatible with Thorlabs' Piezo Controllers that Cover the Full Voltage Range of 0 - 50 V
  • Average Transmission: 95% (Typical) from 400 - 650 nm
  • Transmitted Wavefront Error: <50 nm

These Tunable Lenses mounted in cage plates provide 95% (typical) average transmission from 400 - 650 nm and allow the user to adjust their focal lengths from 10 cm or 20 cm to infinity, making them ideal for custom and experimental optics setups such as confocal microscopy and optical coherence tomography. The lenses have a MEMS-based design featuring TLens®* technology; designed to replicate the functions of the human eye, these tunable lenses provide fast focus with <1 ms response time with a constant field of view, no magnetic interference, and low power consumption of <1 mW. To control the piezoelectric actuators used to set the lens focal length, a male SMC connector on the top of the housing allows the lens to be connected to a Thorlabs piezo controller with one of our SMC Cables (not included). Any of our Piezo Controllers that can operate at least up to 50 V can be used to control these tunable lenses, such as our KPZ101 K-Cube Piezo Controller and our MDT694B Single Channel, Open-Loop Piezo Controller. Care should be taken not to exceed any of the absolute maximum ratings for these devices (see Specs tab for more information).

The VL15S(/M) and VL19S(/M) tunable lenses feature three 4-40 (M3 x 0.5) tapped holes on the sides for post mounting via our Ø6 mm Mini-Series Posts and have four Ø0.16" (4.0 mm) through holes that fit our SR series cage rods, each secured with a 4-40 locking screw that can be loosened with a 0.05" (1.3 mm) hex key. They also feature four through holes that accept 3-48 cap screws for mounting to a 16 mm cage cube. The VL15C(/M) and VL19C(/M) tunable lens features three 8-32 (M4 x 0.7) tapped holes for post mounting via our Ø1/2" Posts and has four Ø0.24" (6.0 mm) through holes for our ER series cage rods, each secured with an M4 x 0.7 locking screw that can be loosened with a 5/64" (2 mm) hex key. For improved imaging capabilities and correction for spherical aberrations when coupling to a microscope or fiber, all the tunable lenses also have M8 x 0.50 internal threads on one side for mounting aspheric lenses such as our Molded Glass Aspheric Lenses.

*TLens® is a registered trademark of poLight ASA.

TLens in Focus
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View Imperial Product List
Item #QtyDescription
VL19C1Ø1.9 mm Aperture Tunable Lens, 30 mm Cage Mount, SM1 Threading, 8-32 Taps
PAA1011Drive Cable for Piezoelectric Actuators, SMC Connectors, 1.5 m Long
KPZ1011K-Cube Piezo Controller (Power Supply Sold Separately)
TPS0021±15 V/5 V Power Supply Unit with Mini-DIN Connectors for up to Two K- or T-Cubes
CXY1A130 mm Cage System, XY Translating Lens Mount for Ø1" Optics
KAD11F1SM1-Threaded Kinematic Pitch/Yaw Adapter for Ø11 mm Cylindrical Components
CPS635R1Collimated Laser Diode Module, 635 nm, 1.2 mW, Round Beam, Ø11 mm Housing
VRC2SM11SM1-Threaded Visible and IR Alignment Disk (400 - 640 nm, 800 - 1700 nm)
CBB1130 mm Cage System U-Bench, 1/4"-20 and 8-32 Tapped Holes
MB6241Aluminum Breadboard 6" x 24" x 1/2", 1/4"-20 Taps
TR33Ø1/2" Optical Post, SS, 8-32 Setscrew, 1/4"-20 Tap, L = 3"
UPH33Ø1/2" Universal Post Holder, Spring-Loaded Locking Thumbscrew, L = 3"
SP15130 mm to 16 mm Cage Adapter Plate, 8-32 Tap
CP333SM1-Threaded 30 mm Cage Plate, 0.35" Thick, 2 Retaining Rings, 8-32 Tap
SR054Compact Cage Assembly Rod, 1/2" Long, Ø4 mm
ER34Cage Assembly Rod, 3" Long, Ø6 mm
ER184Cage Assembly Rod, 18" Long, Ø6 mm
View Metric Product List
Item #QtyDescription
VL19C/M1Ø1.9 mm Aperture Tunable Lens, 30 mm Cage Mount, SM1 Threading, M4 x 0.7 Taps
PAA1011Drive Cable for Piezoelectric Actuators, SMC Connectors, 1.5 m Long
KPZ1011K-Cube Piezo Controller (Power Supply Sold Separately)
TPS0021±15 V/5 V Power Supply Unit with Mini-DIN Connectors for up to Two K- or T-Cubes
CXY1A130 mm Cage System, XY Translating Lens Mount for Ø1" Optics
KAD11F1SM1-Threaded Kinematic Pitch/Yaw Adapter for Ø11 mm Cylindrical Components
CPS635R1Collimated Laser Diode Module, 635 nm, 1.2 mW, Round Beam, Ø11 mm Housing
VRC2SM11SM1-Threaded Visible and IR Alignment Disk (400 - 640 nm, 800 - 1700 nm)
CBB1/M130 mm Cage System U-Bench, M6 x 1.0 and M4 x 0.7 Tapped Holes
MB1560/M1Aluminum Breadboard, 150 mm x 600 mm x 12.7 mm, M6 Taps
TR75/M3Ø12.7 mm Optical Post, SS, M4 Setscrew, M6 Tap, L = 75 mm
UPH75/M3Ø12.7 mm Universal Post Holder, Spring-Loaded Locking Thumbscrew, L = 75 mm
SP15/M130 mm to 16 mm Cage Adapter Plate, M4 Tap
CP33/M3SM1-Threaded 30 mm Cage Plate, 0.35" Thick, 2 Retaining Rings, M4 Tap
SR054Compact Cage Assembly Rod, 1/2" Long, Ø4 mm
ER34Cage Assembly Rod, 3" Long, Ø6 mm
ER184Cage Assembly Rod, 18" Long, Ø6 mm
TLens out of Focus
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TLens out of Focus
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A VL19C Tunable Lens is mounted in a 30 mm cage system, with its focal length controlled by a KPZ101 K-Cube Piezo Controller (left). The middle image shows the beam spot on the target with 0 V applied to the actuator, resulting in a focused beam. The image on the right shows the beam spot on the target with 50 V applied to the actuator, resulting in a collimated beam.
Item # VL15S(/M) VL15C(/M) VL19S(/M) VL19C(/M)
Typical Mechanical Specifications
Cage Size 16 mm 30 mm 16 mm 30 mm
Inner Bore SM05 Threaded SM1 Threaded SM05 Threaded SM1 Threaded
TLens® Dimensions (L x W x T) 4.900 mm x 4.400 mm x 0.545 mm
Assembly Dimensions (L x W x T) 40.3 mm x 25.4 mm x 10.2 mm 54.3 mm x 40.6 mm x 10.2 mm 40.3 mm x 25.4 mm x 10.2 mm 54.3 mm x 40.6 mm x 10.2 mm
Flatness <0.030 mm
TLens® Weight 15 mg
Assembly Weight 14 g 30 g 14 g 30 g
Input Connector Type SMC Male
Drawingsa VL19S Drawing VL19C Drawing VL19S Drawing VL19C Drawing
Typical Optical Specifications
Focal Range Infinity to 10 cm Infinity to 20 cm
Clear Aperture - Sensor Sideb Ø1.55 mm Ø1.90 mm
Clear Aperture - Object Sideb Ø2.00 mm Ø2.25 mm
Transmitted Wavefront Error (RMS)c 30 nm
Average Transmittance (Between 400 and 650 nm) 95%
Typical Actuator Specifications
Minimum Optical Power -4 m-1
Maximum Optical Power 14 m-1 9 m-1
Hysteresisc 1 m-1
Maximum Response Timed 1 ms
Equivalent Capacitance @ 0 V 40 nF 25 nF
Operating Conditions
Operating Voltage (Between Top and Bottom Electrode) 0 V - 50 V
Duty Cycle Over Lifetime-Operating Voltage Cycle 10%
Minimum Operating Voltage Cycles 106
Operating Temperature -20 °C - 85 °C
Relative Humidity <85%
Absolute Maximum Ratings
Storage Temperature -40 °C - 85 °C
Applied Voltage (Between Top and Bottom Electrode) -15 V - 60 V
Applied Current <1 mA
  • Click the blue info icons for drawings.
  • The sensor side is the side with the Thorlabs logo and part number, the object side is the opposite.
  • Over Operating Range from -1 dpt to 9 dpt (VL15 Series) or -1 dpt to 5 dpt (VL19 Series)
  • The Time for the System to Reach 1-1/e ≈ 63.2% of its Final (Asymptotic) Value
TLens Transmission
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Click for Raw Data
The plot above shows the typical transmittance representitive of the VL15 and VL19 series tunable lens. The blue shaded region indicates the specified 400 - 650 nm wavelength range for optimum performance.
UV AR Coating
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Click for Raw Data
The plot above shows example optical power versus voltage curves for an unmounted VL15 series tunable lens at room temperature. The solid curve illustrates a scan between infinity and the minimum focal length. The optical power response is shown for both increasing and for decreasing voltage. The dotted curve shows the optical power vs. voltage for an extended voltage range.
UV AR Coating
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Click for Raw Data
The plot above shows example optical power versus voltage curves for an unmounted VL19 series tunable lens at room temperature. The solid curve illustrates a scan between infinity and the minimum focal length. The optical power response is shown for both increasing and for decreasing voltage. The dotted curve shows the optical power vs. voltage for an extended voltage range.
UV AR Coating
Click to Enlarge

Click for Raw Data
The curves above show the typical thermal behavior of an unmounted VL15 series tunable lens operating at room temperature (25 °C), -20 °C, and 80 °C. Any stress that may affect the lens' thermal behavior is negligible in our cage plate mounts. 
UV AR Coating
Click to Enlarge

Click for Raw Data
The curves above show the typical thermal behavior of an unmounted VL19 series tunable lens operating at room temperature (25 °C), -20 °C, and 80 °C. Any stress that may affect the lens' thermal behavior is negligible in our cage plate mounts. 

Posted Comments:
Zeyang Li  (posted 2024-04-01 23:53:50.73)
Do you have products with higher transmission at 780nm? The current one only transmits about 80% at 780nm.
jdelia  (posted 2024-04-03 08:12:39.0)
Thank you for contacting Thorlabs. We unfortunately do not have a tunable lens with higher transmission at 780 nm as our current selection is optimized for 400 - 650 nm. That said, I could certainly forward your feedback to our design engineers via our internal suggestion forum for future consideration as a catalog item.
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Cage-Mounted Tunable Lenses

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Imperial Price Available
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VL15C/M Support Documentation
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VL19S/M Support Documentation
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VL19C/M Support Documentation
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