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J Microsc. 2011 Nov;244(2):136-43. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2818.2011.03518.x. Epub 2011 Aug 1.

Simple characterisation of a deformable mirror inside a high numerical aperture microscope using phase diversity.

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  • 1Laboratory for Optics and Biosciences, Ecole Polytechnique ParisTech, CNRS, and INSERM, Palaiseau, France.


We present a simple and versatile scheme for characterising amplitude and phase modulation by an active element, such as a deformable mirror, in the pupil plane of a high NA microscope. By placing a mirror in the vicinity of the focal plane of the objective and recording images of the reflected focal spot on a camera, we show that reliable measurements of the influence function of the mirror actuators in the pupil plane of the objective can be obtained using an iterative electric field retrieval algorithm. Compared to direct wavefront sensors, the proposed method allows characterisation for a variety of objectives with different NA and pupil sizes without modification of the setup, requires minimal space inside the microscope, and can be used with pulsed sources such as used for multiphoton microscopy. In order to validate our method, we compare our data to the results obtained with a Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor, and show that comparable precision is achieved.

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