Signal processing methods based on maximum-likelihood theory, discrete chirp Fourier transform, and spectral estimation methods have enabled accurate measurement of phase in phase-shifting interferometry in the presence of nonlinear response of the piezoelectric transducer to the applied voltage. We present the statistical study of these generalized nonlinear phase step estimation methods to identify the best method by deriving the Cramér–Rao bound. We also address important aspects of these methods for implementation in practical applications and compare the performance of the best-identified method with other bench marking algorithms in the presence of harmonics and noise.
© 2007 Optical Society of America
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