PURPOSE To describe a dual-optic accommodating intraocular lens (IOL) based on theoretical considerations. SETTING University and independent research group. METHODS Ray-tracing analysis using optical modeling software (ZEMAXTM, Focus Software Inc., Tucson, Ariz) in a theoretical model eye was used to analyze lens configurations to optimize the accommodative and magnification effects of axial lens displacement. Finite-element modelling using a commercially available PC-based software package (COSMOS DesignSTAR) was applied to design the biomechanical parameters of the inter-optic articulations and optics. RESULTS Ray-tracing analysis indicated that a dual-optic design with a high plus-powered front optic coupled to a minus posterior optic produced greater change in conjugation power of the eye compared to a single-optic intraocular lens and that magnification effects were unlikely to account for improved near vision. Finite-element modelling indicated that the 2 optics can be linked by spring-loaded haptics that allow anterior and posterior axial displacement of the front optic in response to changes in ciliary body tone and capsular tension. CONCLUSION A dual-optic design linked by spring haptics increases the accommodative effect of axial optic displacement with minimal magnification effect and has promise for improving the performance of accommodative intraocular lenses.