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Fourier-domain low-coherence interferometry for light-scattering spectroscopy

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Abstract

We present a novel method for obtaining depth-resolved spectra for determining scatterer size through elastic-scattering properties. Depth resolution is achieved with a white-light source in a Michelson interferometer with the mixed signal and reference fields dispersed by a spectrograph. The spectrum is Fourier transformed to yield the axial spatial cross correlation between the signal and reference fields with near 1µm depth resolution. Spectral information is obtained by windowing to yield the scattering amplitude as a function of wave number. The technique is demonstrated by determination of the size of polystyrene microspheres in a subsurface layer with subwavelength accuracy. Application of the technique to probing the size of cell nuclei in living epithelial tissues is discussed.

© 2003 Optical Society of America

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