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Optical Design & Engineering

Harrison H. Barrett plenary: Information Content of a Photon in Optical Imaging, Quantum Imaging, and Radiology

A plenary talk from SPIE Optics + Photonics 2014.

10 October 2014, SPIE Newsroom. DOI: 10.1117/2.3201410.17

A fundamental way of describing a quantum-limited imaging system is in terms of a Poisson random process in spatial, angular and wavelength variables. The mean of this random process is the spectral radiance. The principle of conservation of radiance then allows a full characterization of the noise in the image (conditional on viewing a specified object). Radiance can be defined in terms of geometrical optics, physical optics, or quantum optics as well as for x-rays or gamma-rays, so a unified treatment of noise in imaging can be developed. Combined with well-established theories for task-based assessment of image quality, these concepts allow a rigorous definition of the information content of a photon.

Harrison H. Barrett, College of Optical Sciences, The Univ. of Arizona Dr. Harrison Barrett received degrees in physics from VPI, MIT, and Harvard, and he is a Regents Professor at the University of Arizona. His research is in the area of image science, and his book on the subject, coauthored with Kyle J. Myers, was awarded the J.W. Goodman Book Writing Award from OSA and SPIE in 2006. He was the 2011 recipient of the IEEE Medal for Innovations in Healthcare Technology and also the 2011 recipient of the SPIE Gold Medal of the Society. In 2014 he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

Kyle J. Myers, Ctr. for Devices and Radiological Health, U.S. Food and Drug AdministrationDr. Kyle J. Myers received a bachelor's degree in mathematics and physics from Occidental College in 1980 and a PhD in optical sciences from the University of Arizona in 1985. Since 1987 she has worked for the Center for Devices and Radiological Health of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, where she is currently the Director of the Division of Imaging and Applied Mathematics in the Office of Science and Engineering Laboratories. She is a fellow of the Optical Society (OSA), SPIE, AIMBE, and a member of the Medical Image Perception Society. Along with Harrison H. Barrett, she is the coauthor of "Foundations of Image Science."