The Magic the Mystery and the Science behind the Ophthalmic Lens Blank

Product Spotlight – PPG Industries Trivex

By Deborah Kotob, ABOM and Keith M. Cross, ABOC

Release Date: September 15, 2020

Expiration Date: October 31, 2021

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this program, the participant should be able to:

  1. To learn about the development of ophthalmic lens monomers and coatings
  2. To learn about lens casting and dip/spin coating.
  3. To see how a lens monomer is cast into a finished or semi-finished lens blank
  4. To learn how to communicate the performance benefits of ophthalmic lens materials to the patient

Course Description

ECP's generally know the benefits of various materials and how they apply to a particular patient's Rx. Yet, we know little about the material science or engineering of ophthalmic lens monomers or lens casting in the production of finished or semi-finished lens blanks used in the making of eyeglasses. Most of us possess a natural curiosity to learn about the making of things, such as ophthalmic lenses. I admit to knowing little about the development of what PPG chemists humorously refer to as the "magic goop." They use this term to describe the chemical solution that is the base of the lens monomer or coating formulary used in casting and coating of ophthalmic lenses. After a tour of the R&D facility of PPG, I was both overwhelmed and impressed by the amount of research and development required to produce the magic goop as was I impressed by the casting process for lenses.

In this course, you will gain a new appreciation for the ophthalmic lens, both semi-finished and finished. You will learn about the chemistry of ophthalmic lens monomers and coating formularies for casting and coating. The next time you hold a PPG TRIVEX® material or PPG CR-39® material or the new PPG TRIBRID® material, lens blank in your hand, take a moment to be amazed. Please take a moment to ponder all of the planning, the R&D, the casting, the coating, and the marketing it takes to get that FDA Class 1 Medical Device into your hands and on the patient's face. As the patient's trusted ECP, your new appreciation and enthusiasm will transfer to the patient, raising their appreciation for the small but essential accessory that corrects their vision.

Faculty/Editorial Board:

Deborah KotobDeborah Kotob, ABOM, is the Director of Education and Training for Jobson Medical Information. Her experience spans more than twenty years in the optical industry. During this time, her roles included optical boutiques owner, optician, optical frame sales, and over ten years in lens manufacturing as a Lens Consultant, Trainer, and LMS content developer. She lectures, trains, conducts webinars on a variety of optical, and practice development topics.


Keith M. CrossKeith M. Cross is currently the Co-Leader of PPG’s Optical Monomers and Coatings business unit as well as its Global Director of Strategic Marketing.  He has been with PPG’s Optical business since 2012 serving in a variety of technical and commercial roles prior to taking over the leadership of the Optical business unit in 2019.  Keith has been a part of the optical Industry for the last 25+ years – starting his career as a Massachusetts Registered Dispensing Optician in 1994 – and still holds his ABO & MA license today. He is the current Chairman of The Vision Council’s Lens Division where he also serves on their Board of Directors as well as being a member of the ANSI / ISO delegation.  Keith received his BA from New England College, his MBA from Fitchburg State University and has also completed The Executive Integral Leadership program at the University of Notre Dame.

Credit Statement:

This course has been approved for one (1) hour of Ophthalmic Level I continuing education credit by the American Board of Opticianry (ABO). Course STWJHI025-2

Supported By:

This course is supported by an educational grant from PPG


This course has multiple parts.

Please download and read the PDF version, watch the video presentation, download and review any of the resources that are part of the resources tab. For the final steps review the questions for the test and take the test. Results are automatically sent to the ABO and your ABO account will be updated.

Click here for the PDF.

PDF NARRATIVE (pdf)
Click here for Video.

Video PRESENTATION (video)