Photopigment curves based on the Stockman & Sharpe (2000) cone fundamentals

Data key


  1. Wavelength (nm)
  2. log L-cone photopigment optical density
  3. log M-cone photopigment optical density
  4. log S-cone spectral sensitivity


    Photopigment optical density curves calculated from the 2° (or 10°) cone spectral sensitivities of Stockman and Sharpe (2000) at 0.1, 1 or 5 nm steps. The 0.1 and 1 nm functions were obtained by the interpolation of the 5 nm functions using a cubic spline. The functions are normalized to peak at unity at the nearest 0.1 nm step.  In making these calculations, a macular pigment density of 0.35 at peak, a lens density of 1.76 at 400 nm, and peak photopigment optical densities of 0.50 (for L and M) and 0.40 (for S) were assumed.  The lens and macular pigment density spectra were those of Stockman, Sharpe and Fach (1999).

    For further details, see Stockman, Sharpe & Fach (1999) and Stockman & Sharpe (2000).  A mean template based on these curves can be found here.


Stockman, A., Sharpe, L. T., & Fach, C. C. (1999). The spectral sensitivity of the human short-wavelength cones. Vision Research, 39, 2901-2927.

Stockman, A., & Sharpe, L. T. (2000). Spectral sensitivities of the middle- and long-wavelength sensitive cones derived from measurements in observers of known genotype. Vision Research, 40, 1711-1737.