Wavelength-scanning interferometry permits the simultaneous measurement of variations in surface shape and optical thickness of a nearly parallel plate. Interference signals from both surfaces of the test plate can be separated in frequency space; however, these frequencies are shifted from the expected frequency by the refractive-index dispersion of the test plate and any nonlinearity that is due to wavelength scanning. Conventional Fourier analysis is sensitive to this detuning of the signal frequency and suffers from multiple-beam interference noise. We propose new wavelength-scanning algorithms that permit a large tolerance for dispersion of the test plate and nonlinearity of scanning. Two 19-sample algorithms that suppress multiple-interference noise up to the second order of the reflectance of the test plate are presented. Experimental results show that the variation in surface shape and optical thickness of a glass parallel plate of 250-mm diameter was measured with a resolution of 1–2 nm rms.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
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