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Overcoming light scattering: New optical system sees deeper inside tissue
Date:7/2/2014

they are measured. This allows them to reconstruct the image.

One of the most surprising aspects of the team's work is that they use essentially a single-pixel sensor to capture the images. While most people think that more pixels result in better image quality, there are some cases where this isn't true, Lancis said. In low-light imaging, for instance, it's better to integrate all available light into a single sensor. If the light is split into millions of pixels, each sensor receives a tiny fraction of light, creating noise and destroying the image.

"Something similar happens when you try to transmit images through scattering media," Lancis said. "When we use a conventional digital camera to get an image, we only see the familiar noisy pattern known as 'speckle.' In compressive imaging, since we aren't using pixelated sensors, it should be less sensitive to light scrambling and enable transmission of images through scattering."

Also notable, the team's technique could operate through dynamic scattering. "Most scattering media of interest, like biological tissue, are dynamic in the sense that the scatter centers continuously change their positions with time -- meaning that the speckle patterns are 'in motion.' This is ideal for some applications because monitoring the changes of the speckle can reveal information about the sample, but the drawback is that it's a major nuisance to transmit or get images," Lancis pointed out. "Our technique, however, requires no calibration of the medium, and its fluctuations during the sensing stage don't limit imaging ability."

What's ahead for the team? "Our next goal is to break the barriers of light penetration depth inside a scattering medium with the state-of-the-art megapixel-programmable spatial light modulators used in consumer electronics," Lancis says. To do this, they'll need to demonstrate that their technique works even when the sample is embedded inside the tissue.


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Contact: Angela Stark
astark@osa.org
202-416-1443
The Optical Society
Source:Eurekalert  

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