The results of joint transform correlation with photoanisotropic organic materials are presented. The materials' dynamic holographic recording capability and high resolution permit the operation of such a correlator in real time. Both theoretical and experimental results show that the photoanisotropic properties cause a dependence of the correlation output on the state of the polarization of the readout beam and can be used to produce an output polarization orthogonal to the input, which permits polarization filtering to be used, greatly increasing the signal-to-noise ratio. The effect of the saturation of the nonlinearity on correlation performance is investigated and is shown to be able to improve correlator recognition and discrimination. The correlation results of binary images and of a high-resolution synthetic-aperture radar image are presented, demonstrating excellent optical quality, nonlinear edge enhancement, and real-time operation.
© 1994 Optical Society of America
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