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Light field photography, microscopy, and illumination

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The light field is a four-dimensional function representing radiance along rays. By inserting a microlens array into the optical train of an ordinary microscope, we can record these light fields. From these we can generate perspective views, refocused images, focal stacks, and volume data. Inserting a similar array into a microscope’s illumination path, we can control the light falling on a specimen in space and angle. This control can be used to simulate exotic microscope illumination modalities, to increase the contrast of ordinary fluorescence microscopy, and to correct digitally for optical aberrations in a microscope imaging system.

© 2010 OSA, SPIE

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