Abstract

Optical methods for particle size distribution measurements in practical high temperature environments are approaching feasibility and offer significant advantages over conventional sampling methods. A key requirement of single particle counting techniques is the need to know features of the sample volume intensity distribution which in general are a function of the particle scattering properties and optical system geometry. In addition, the sample volume intensity distribution is sensitive to system alignment and thus calculations of alignment sensitivity are required for assessment of practical alignment tolerances. To this end, an analysis of sample volume characteristics for single particle counters in general has been developed. Results from the theory are compared with experimental measurements and shown to be in good agreement. A parametric sensitivity analysis is performed and a criterion for allowable optical mialignment is derived for conditions where beam steering caused by fluctuating refractive-index gradients is significant.

© 1985 Optical Society of America

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