fresnel

The Third Order Fresnel Lens

The invention of the Fresnel lens was an enormous technological breakthrough in 1820 that affects us today--for example, in theater lights and car head lamps. These lenses revolutionized lighthouses and saved countless lives. They are not in widespread use now and are rapidly disappearing through vandalism and neglect. Not much is known about working on them, which makes the educational aspect of the lens restoration very valuable. We want to record and disseminate this information as thoroughly as possible, to make it possible for others to care for and, hopefully, restore other lenses.

chance brothers

Research tells us that our lens is one of only three lenses in the United States made by the English firm of Chance Brothers. It is in very good condition and needs little mechanical work. Restoring the Fresnel and putting it back into operation preserves a significant piece of our maritime heritage for future generations. It is the heart of the Point Cabrillo Lightstation.



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