Abstract

In viewing systems that employ critical, Kohler, or collimated illumination, the illumination may frequently be characterized by the complex degree of coherence in the form of a first-order Bessel function divided by its argument. The anomalies that occur in the image of a tri-bar target viewed in partially coherent illumination of this form are discussed for a two-dimensional circular diffraction-limited imaging system. The Sparrow criterion, which in this case correlates with experimental measurements of resolving power, is applied to determine the resolution limit. The computed resolution-limit curve for a tri-bar target is shown and compared to the previously published two-point resolution-limit curve for a one-dimensional system and to the limiting values obtained in a two-dimensional system for coherent and incoherent illumination. In the latter case, the full curve is shown as a special case of the application of the Sparrow criterion to the partially coherent imaging equations for a circular two-dimensional system. Experimental confirmation of the calculations is given.

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