Over 50 years experience as individual contributor and director of optical systems and optical coating development, design, and production.  Also 50 years as a member of the Optical Society of America. A member of SPIE from its first years.  Well versed in optical and thin film design and fabrication. Expert in optical tolerancing and practical optical instrument development.  Has served as an expert forensic witness for optical systems and coating litigations.  Teaches short courses internationally. Author of many technical papers and five (5) books (see publications list).


Mr. Willey graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, having majored in optical instrumentation. He also earned a Masters degree in computer science from the Florida Institute of Technology. He has taken many American Management Association courses, SPIE courses, and the U. S. Government’s Defense Manufacturing Management Course. He has taught optics at the Florida Institute of Technology, the University of Wisconsin, and Martin Marietta Corporation. He has taught optical thin film design, development, and production at the Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers, the Society of Vacuum Coaters, Florida Institute of Technology, and the University of Wisconsin.


5/99-Present Willey Optical, Consultants, Charlevoix Michigan

11/97 to 5/99 Senior Staff Engineer, Hughes Danbury Optical Systems/ Raytheon, Danbury, CT

Responsible for and individual contributor to the design and development of new optical coatings and processes for space and military applications.

3/95 to 10/97 Director, LexaLite Scientific Center, Charlevoix, MI

Responsible for and individual contributor to the design and development of new 14-chamber automated continuous in-line optical coating equipment and processes for the multilayer coating of injection molded optics for the lighting industry.

9/94 to 3/95 Consultant

Developed and patented an improved plasma/ion source.

7/85 to 9/94 Vice President, Technology, Opto Mechanik, Inc., Melbourne, FL

Responsible for and individual contributor to the development of all new instruments, test equipment, and processes in optical coating and instrument production including a great variety of Tank and Artillery Fire Control Viewing and Aiming Systems, the super-achromatic Multi-Focal-Length Tracking Telescope. Purchased 32, 40, and 48″ box optical thin film coaters.

12/84 to 7/85 President, Willey Corporation, Melbourne, FL

Produced a quantity of Willey developed and patented tank gunnery trainers.

1/81 to 11/84 Director, Optical Component Center, Martin Marietta Orlando Aerospace

Built group from a laboratory to 150 skilled workers in optical fabrication, coating, and assembly. Responsible for fabrication, coating, and assembly of all optics for the TADS/PNVS, LANTIRN, PAVE PENNY, HELLFIRE, COPPERHEAD, ADATS, and other programs. Purchased and installed three State-of-the-Art 40″ box optical thin film coaters.

12/64 to 12/80 President, Willey Corporation, Melbourne, FL

Formed company and served a wide variety of clients with consulting, development, prototypes, production, and follow-on support. Some of the results include: Dual Field Space Sextant, Grating Spectrophotometer, Fourier Transform Diffuse Reflectance Spectrophotometer, Film Thickness Monitor, Aspheric Cockpit Projection Collimator (HUD), Automatic Luminaire Design System, Tank Gunnery Simulator, 15″Holographic Lens, Submarine Periscope Simulator, Flickerless Stop-Motion Projection System, 180 degree Anamorphic Lenses, Emissometer, Solar Absorptance Meter, Transportation Automatic Addressing and Labeling System, Computer Automated Performance Evaluator for Raceboats, Zoom Lens for Missile Guidance Simulation.

Adjunct Professor of Optics, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida.

7/63 to 11/64 Director of Optics, Instrument Corporation of Florida, Melbourne, FL.

Developed tracking optical systems, stellar geodetic optics, and an ultra-precise lens alignment system.

1/60 to 6/63 Optical Engineer, United Aircraft Research Laboratories, East Hartford, Conn.

Developed automatic lens design programs with special emphasis on aspherics in the world’s largest computing facility under one roof.

1/58 to 12/59 Optical Engineer, Block Associates, Inc., Cambridge, Mass.

Developed satellite tracking optics, missile-borne spectrometers and interferometers and a 30×30″ length measuring interferometer (before lasers).

Mr. Willey is Fellow of the Optical Society of America (OSA) and the Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE), and Past President of the Florida Section of the Optical Society. He is also a member of the Society for Information Display (SID), American Vacuum Society (AVS), American Physical Society (APS), and the American Institute of Physics (AIP). He has been a Director of the Society of Vacuum Coaters (SVC) and the original organizer of its expanded optical coating programs. He received the 2019 Mentor Award of the SVC.