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Appl Opt. 2009 Nov 20;48(33):6458-65. doi: 10.1364/AO.48.006458.

Differential modal Zernike wavefront sensor employing a computer-generated hologram: a proposal.

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  • 1Photonics Division, Instruments Research and Development Establishment, Dehradun 248008, India.


The process of Zernike mode detection with a Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor is computationally extensive. A holographic modal wavefront sensor has therefore evolved to process the data optically by use of the concept of equal and opposite phase bias. Recently, a multiplexed computer-generated hologram (CGH) technique was developed in which the output is in the form of bright dots that specify the presence and strength of a specific Zernike mode. We propose a wavefront sensor using the concept of phase biasing in the latter technique such that the output is a pair of bright dots for each mode to be sensed. A normalized difference signal between the intensities of the two dots is proportional to the amplitude of the sensed Zernike mode. In our method the number of holograms to be multiplexed is decreased, thereby reducing the modal cross talk significantly. We validated the proposed method through simulation studies for several cases. The simulation results demonstrate simultaneous wavefront detection of lower-order Zernike modes with a resolution better than lambda/50 for the wide measurement range of +/-3.5lambda with much reduced cross talk at high speed.

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