Abstract

In displacement measurements by two-beam interferometers, the wavefront curvature of a laser beam causes a systematic increase of the fringe period. This increase depends on beam collimation: It is null for a plane wave and proportional to the squared divergence of the beam. With interfering beams not perfectly recombined, an additional fringe-period error is caused, with the effect of counteracting and also of compensating for and prevailing over the usual error. We describe this hitherto unsuspected effect and give a correction equation.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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