Abstract

Using a single-beam, compact interferometer, we measure the refractive index of liquids in the near IR. This highly compact device relies on a silica capillary with a 50μm inner diameter: it uses a minimal volume of test liquid, isolates the liquid from the humid atmosphere, has broadband operation, and is inherently mechanically stable. These characteristics, in combination with straightforward data acquisition, make it particularly well-suited for measuring the optical properties in the near IR of a wide range of liquids. Using this refractometer, we measure the refractive index of high-index liquids that are expected to be hydroscopic. The accuracy of the refractometer (±0.1%) is demonstrated through measuring the indices of air and pure water. We show that the hydroscopic behavior of the probed liquids has little influence on their optical properties in the near IR.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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