Interferograms obtained with ordinary interferometers, such as the Fizeau interferometer or the Twyman–Green interferometer, show the contour maps of a wave front under test. On the other hand, lateral shearing interferograms show the difference between a wave front under test and a sheared wave front, that is, the inclination of the wave front. Therefore the shape of the wave front under test is reconstructed by means of analyzing the difference. To reconstruct the wave front, many methods have been proposed. An integration method is usually used to reconstruct the wave front under test rapidly. However, this method has two disadvantages: The analysis accuracy of the method is low, and part of the wave front cannot be measured. To overcome these two problems, a new, to our knowledge, integration method, improved by use of polynomials, is proposed. The validity of the proposed method is evaluated by computer simulations. In the simulations the analysis accuracy achieved by the proposed method is compared with the analysis accuracy of the ordinary integration method and that of the method proposed by Rimmer and Wyant. The results of the simulations show that the analysis accuracy of the newly proposed method is better than that of the integration method and that of the Rimmer–Wyant method.
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