Abstract

An approach for designing Talbot array illuminators that produce quasi-arbitrary numbers of spots and quasi-arbitrary distributions of these spots in the output plane is proposed. The approach consists in combining elementary Talbot array illuminators. In addition to the quasi-arbitrary topology of the output spots, the resulting compound array illuminator shows several advantages such as its ability to be used for both coherent and incoherent imaging. Compared with elementary array illuminators, the compound illuminator does not add any specific technological complication.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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