Conventional numerical reconstruction for digital holography using a filter applied in the spatial-frequency domain to extract the primary image may yield suboptimal image quality because of the loss in high-frequency components and interference from other undesirable terms of a hologram. We propose a new numerical reconstruction approach using a statistical technique. This approach reconstructs the complex field of the object from the real-valued hologram intensity data. Because holographic image reconstruction is an ill-posed problem, our statistical technique is based on penalized-likelihood estimation. We develop a Poisson statistical model for this problem and derive an optimization transfer algorithm that monotonically decreases the cost function at each iteration. Simulation results show that our statistical technique has the potential to improve image quality in digital holography relative to conventional reconstruction techniques.
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