Abstract

This paper presents a design procedure for a fiber interferometer, the optical system, and its associated electronic control. Analog and digital circuits were optimized to achieve an inexpensive and compact system. The lock-in amplifier required for phase control was designed using a field programmable gate array that was also configured to carry out the required phase stepping. The interferometer was built into two stages. The first stage used only one wavelength to measure samples with step heights in the hundreds of nanometers, with improvements in accuracy through averaging of data. The next stage included two measurement wavelengths to extend the measurement range to a few hundreds of micrometers. The paper conducts a systematic study of sources of errors. A least squares method that minimizes measurement time but retains accuracy has been used to measure height.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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