Europe, UK, Asia & RoW: [email protected] +44 (0)1622 859444 | USA & Canada: [email protected] +1 401-583-7846

Knight Optical Custom Optical Components - Page Header - Optics Laboratory

Custom Ball & Half Ball Lenses

Half Ball Lenses and Large Ball Lenses

Stock Available

Bespoke Ordering Available

Contact us now

Find out more about our custom ball & half ball lenses

Call +44 (0)1622 859444 Call +1 401 583 7846
Global leaders in custom optical solutions
Internationally recognised
All optical components 100% QA checked
ISO14001 & ISO9001 certified

At Knight Optical, leaders in custom optical solutions, we provide an extensive array of competitively priced optical ball lenses, including half ball lenses and large ball lenses, tailored to meet your specific needs. Our offerings span from micro-optics with a diminutive 0.13mm diameter to more substantial lenses boasting a 150mm diameter.

To cater to your precise requirements, all our ball and half ball lenses are available in various grades. These range from high-precision grade 3 ball lenses, renowned for their exceptional sphericity and surface quality, to more commercially viable grade 100 ball lenses. Whether you’re seeking sapphire ball lenses or lenses with specialised half ball lens focal lengths, Knight Optical ensures you get the specifications you desire.

Their precise dimensions, straightforward alignment, and full rotational symmetry make them a cost-effective choice in optical solutions. These optical ball lenses are especially advantageous for achieving precise lens light ball effects, offering unparalleled focal length control, which is crucial in applications using ball and half ball lenses.

We also offer a variety of broader custom lenses.

Half Ball Lenses and Large Ball Lenses

Speak to our experts about your Custom Ball & Half Ball Lenses needs today

Call +44 (0)1622 859444 Call +1 401 583 7846

Make a quick enquiry about Custom Ball & Half Ball Lenses Now

Dive into the forefront of optical solutions. Got questions about an optical product? Reach out now and let our expertise guide you.

    Typical Dimensions of Ball & Half Ball Lens Materials

    We offer a diverse range of materials for your optical ball lens and half sphere lens needs, including sapphire, N-BK7, UV fused silica (UVFS), ruby, cubic zirconia and high-index materials such as LASFN-9, LASFN-35, S-LAH78, and S-LAH79. Knight Optical can also offer uniform, full-surface AR coatings to optimise the ball lens performance.

    When it comes to dimensions, our selection is quite comprehensive. Typical dimensions of the materials we can offer are as follows:

    Sapphire0.2 – 25.4mm
    Fused Silica0.3 – 25.4mm
    Spinel0.2 – 8mm
    Cubic Zirconia0.2 – 20mm
    Alumina 99.9% & 99.5%0.4 – 150mm
    Zirconia Yttria0.4 – 150mm
    Silicon Nitride0.4 – 25.4mm
    Tungsten Carbide0.13 – 25.4mm
    Steel0.13 – 25.4mm
    Optical Glass – NBK7, LASFN, LASFN-35, LASFN-90.2 – 20mm
    Low thermal expansion glass – Zerodurupon request
    Technical Glass – Borosilicate, Crystal Clear Sode – Black Soda – Red Glass 1 – 12.7mm

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Ball lenses are typically small optical components manufactured from glass, quartz, and other optical materials. They are characterised by their spherical shape and act as a lens. Their main purpose is to collimate light from all directions, due to their shape, and focus it to a point. They are often used in applications such as fibre coupling and medical endoscopes. 

    The focal length of a ball lens is determined by its radius of curvature of the surface and refractive index of the material, and is calculated using the lensmaker’s equation. With a ball lens, the smaller the radius of curvature, the smaller the focal length. 

    A half ball lens or half sphere lens is simply half of a fully spherical ball lens. They are often used where a more compact design may be required. 

    Sapphire ball lenses work from UV to mid-infrared making them ideal for optical applications working over a broad wavelength range. They are also extremely durable both in hardness and chemical resistance making them an excellent choice when used in harsh environments. They are often used in laser systems, imaging systems, and medical devices. 

    The effectiveness of the ball lens is dependent on the application it is required for. A large ball lens has a wider aperture and can therefore collect light from a wider field of view and has a longer focal length which can be beneficial in applications that require a greater working distance. A smaller ball lens will focus light more rapidly due to their short focal length which is beneficial in applications such as fibre coupling where efficiency is required. They are also more compact and lightweight. 

    Is your question not here?

    We are ready and waiting to answer any queries you may have about ball & half ball lenses.

    Additional Information

    High refractive indices

    High-refractive-index materials are often chosen for optical ball lenses, such as sapphire, for their short back focal lengths, boosting fibre coupling efficiency. Common choices include S-LAH79 (2.003), LASFN9 (1.8502), LASFN35 (2.022), and LAH78 (1.9013). These materials excel in achieving accurate light collimation enhancing the optical performance.  

    Preforms for Aspheric Lenses

    Ball lenses can serve as preforms for moulded aspheric lenses. This application streamlines the manufacturing process and curtails associated costs, making these optical ball lenses a cost-effective option for custom optical solutions.

    Durable and versatile

    Sapphire ball lenses, along with ruby variants, are the go-to options when durability is a key requirement. Sapphire excels with an impressive transmission range of 200nm to 5µm, making it versatile for UV, visible, and NIR applications. 

    Silicon lenses for IR applications

    Silicon ball lenses are particularly well-suited for IR applications, given their exceptional transmission range of 1.2-15µm. These optical ball lenses are advantageous for those seeking specific ball and half ball lens focal lengths in the infrared spectrum. 


    Spherical aberration

    Ball lenses do exhibit spherical aberration, which makes them less than ideal for imaging applications. This is an important consideration when selecting an optical ball lens. Despite this limitation, they excel in other optical solutions where spherical aberration is less of a concern.

    Typical Applications

    Ball & Half Ball Lenses for Telecom Optics

    Telecom Optics

    In the telecommunications industry, optical ball lenses play a crucial role in enhancing signal quality for bandwidth communications. They are particularly effective in fibre-to-fibre, diode-to-fibre, and diode-to-diode assemblies that require efficient coupling and collimation. Whether you need sapphire ball lenses, large ball lenses, or lenses with specific ball lens focal lengths, these components are essential for achieving optimal light collimation.

    Ball & Half Ball Lenses for Diverse Optical Applications

    Diverse Optical Applications

    Optical ball lenses find utility in a range of applications such as endoscopy, bar code scanning, and sensor systems. These lenses are adept at providing precise lens collimation. Their versatility makes them a valuable component in various settings, contributing to the efficacy of these diverse optical solutions.

    Ball & Half Ball Lenses or Hemispherical Lenses for Traffic Lights

    Hemispherical Lenses in Traffic Lights

    In modern LED traffic light systems, half ball lenses or hemispherical lenses are employed to uniformly disperse light, as opposed to collimating it. These half ball lenses offer a practical alternative to traditional optical ball lenses, especially in scenarios with space limitations. With their unique half ball lens focal lengths, they excel in ensuring uniform lens light ball effects, making them a crucial component in modern traffic control optical solutions.

    Get in touch with us:

    With our in-house state-of-the-art metrology laboratory you can be confident that your optical components will meet your requirements. You can find out more about our testing facilities here.

      Main Form CTA Image

      Operating for over 30 years

      Knight Optical has been operating for over 30 years, with our managing director Colin Overton at the helm. Over this time, we have become a global leader in the production and distribution of scientific optical components and bringing quality into focus for all of our products and services that we provide.

      Our 2022/2023 Catalogue

      Inside Knight Optical’s catalogue you’ll find details of the industries we serve as well as the many other services we can offer. It also showcases hundreds of our most popular products, supported by useful technical information, to help you choose the right part for your application.
      Click below to view our digital catalogue now.

      view our catalogue