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Proceedings Paper

Confocal microscopy and variable-focal length microlenses
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Paper Abstract

Confocal microscopy has a unique optical sectioning property which allows three-dimensional images at different depths. Use of a microlens array is a potential alternative to the Nipkow disk for parallel imaging with high throughput in real-time confocal microscopy. The use of variable-focal-length microlenses can provide a way to axially scan the foci electronically avoiding the inflexible mechanical movement of the lens or the sample. Here we demonstrate a combination of a variable-focal-length microlens array and a fiber optic bundle as a way to create a high throughput aperture array that would be potentially applied as confocal imaging in vivo biological specimens. Variable focal length microlenses that we use consist of a liquid crystal film sandwiched between a pair of conductive substrates with patterned electrodes. The incident side of the microlens array was determined by examining the focus distribution in the axial direction. The variation of the focal length obtained by changing the voltage and corresponding focus intensity were measured through a conventional microscope. Meanwhile, the fiber bundle was characterized by coupling with either coherent or incoherent light source. We use the fiber bundle as both a multiple aperture and an image-carrying element and combine it with a microlens array to built up a confocal system. Axial responses are measured in two optical arrangements as a route to investigate endoscope potential.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 July 2004
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 5324, Three-Dimensional and Multidimensional Microscopy: Image Acquisition and Processing XI, (13 July 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.528930
Show Author Affiliations
Aaron M. Mac Raighne, Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
Lisong Yang, Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
L. Andrea Dunbar, Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (Switzerland)
Eithne M. McCabe, Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
Toralf Scharf, Univ. de Neuchatel (Switzerland)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5324:
Three-Dimensional and Multidimensional Microscopy: Image Acquisition and Processing XI
Jose-Angel Conchello; Carol J. Cogswell; Tony Wilson, Editor(s)

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