This paper discusses the shaping of composites of angular harmonics (AHs) by means of diffraction optical elements (DOEs), their propagation in free space, and detection of a specific AH in the light beam. Modeling is done to show how the detection accuracy is affected by such distortions as scale mismatch, astigmatism, shift, and failure of the illuminating beam and the DOE to be coaxial. The traversal of obstacles in the form of coarse particles and their effect on the accuracy with which the AHs are detected are modeled. © 2005 Optical Society of America

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