Real-time high-resolution mid-infrared optical coherence tomography

Israelsen, Niels M., Petersen, Christian R., Barh, Ajanta, Jain, Deepak, Jensen, Mikkel, Hannesschläger, Günther, Tidemand-Lichtenberg, Peter, Pedersen, Christian, Podoleanu, Adrian G.H., Bang, Ole and others. (2019) Real-time high-resolution mid-infrared optical coherence tomography. Light: Science & Applications, 8 (1). ISSN 2047-7538. (doi:10.1038/s41377-019-0122-5)

Abstract

The potential for improving the penetration depth of optical coherence tomography systems by using light sources with longer wavelengths has been known since the inception of the technique in the early 1990s. Nevertheless, the development of mid-infrared optical coherence tomography has long been challenged by the maturity and fidelity of optical components in this spectral region, resulting in slow acquisition, low sensitivity, and poor axial resolution. In this work, a mid-infrared spectral-domain optical coherence tomography system operating at a central wavelength of 4?µm and an axial resolution of 8.6?µm is demonstrated. The system produces two-dimensional cross-sectional images in real time enabled by a high-brightness 0.9- to 4.7-µm mid-infrared supercontinuum source with a pulse repetition rate of 1?MHz for illumination and broadband upconversion of more than 1-µm bandwidth from 3.58–4.63?µm to 820–865?nm, where a standard 800-nm spectrometer can be used for fast detection. The images produced by the mid-infrared system are compared with those delivered by a state-of-the-art ultra-high-resolution near-infrared optical coherence tomography system operating at 1.3??m, and the potential applications and samples suited for this technology are discussed. In doing so, the first practical mid-infrared optical coherence tomography system is demonstrated, with immediate applications in real-time non-destructive testing for the inspection of defects and thickness measurements in samples that exhibit strong scattering at shorter wavelengths.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1038/s41377-019-0122-5
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics > QC355 Optics
Divisions: Faculties > Sciences > School of Physical Sciences
Faculties > Sciences > School of Physical Sciences > Applied Optics Group
Depositing User: Adrian Podoleanu
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2019 11:06 UTC
Last Modified: 30 May 2019 08:46 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/71782 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Podoleanu, Adrian G.H.: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4899-9656
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