principal point

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principal point . (a) The foot of the perpendicular from the interior perspective center of a lens to the plane of the photograph; the geometric center of an aerial photograph, or the point where the optical axis of the lens meets the film plane in an aerial camera. Symbol: p. See also: fiducial mark; photograph center. Syn: center point. (b) Either of two points on the axis of a lens such that a ray from any point of the object directed toward one principal point will emerge from the lens in a parallel direction but directed through the other principal point. (c) The point at which a principal visual ray intersects a perspective plane.