Abstract

The dynamic range of a Ronchi test with a phase-shifted sinusoidal grating was investigated theoretically and experimentally. As the number of fringes in a Ronchi interferogram increases, the fringe visibility decreases, which results in a decrease of phase-measurement resolution. It is shown that in order to optimize the dynamic range the effective wavelength of the interferogram should be tuned to the characteristic wavelength of the object wave front. The maximum dynamic range achievable is estimated to be 16 times larger than that of a Fizeau interferometer. Suppressing higher-order diffraction components has achieved sheared interferograms with a signal-to-noise ratio in excess of 60:1. The effects of nonsinusoidal transmittance of the grating and the phase-shift errors were minimized by a seven-sample phase-shifting algorithm, and a phase measurement uncertainty of less than 1/700 has been achieved.

© 1997 Optical Society of America

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