Abstract

Spectrally encoded confocal microscopy (SECM) is a novel approach for obtaining high resolution, depth-sectioned images of microstructure within turbid samples. By encoding one spatial dimension in wavelength, imaging probes can be greatly simplified compared to standard scanning confocal microscopes, potentially enabling endoscopic implementation. The use of a diffraction grating for spectral encoding, however, skews the optical axis through the probe, thus complicating the design of narrow diameter instruments. In this Letter, we describe a novel use of a single-optical-axis element based on high index-of-refraction prisms and a transmission holographic grating for the design of narrow diameter SECM devices. Confocal images obtained with a 10.0 mm probe demonstrate a transverse resolution of 1.1 µm and a field of view of 650 µm.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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References

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Dermatology (1)

P. Corcuff, J. L. Leveque, �??In vivo vision of the human skin with the tandem scanning microscope,�?? Dermatology 186, 50-54 (1993).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

J. Invest. Dermatol. (1)

M. Rajadhyaksha, M. Grossman, D. Esterowitz, R. H. Webb, R. R. Anderson, �??In vivo confocal scanning laser microscopy of human skin: melanin provides strong contrast,�?? J. Invest. Dermatol. 104, 946-952 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

Opt. Commun. (1)

J. Knittel, L. Schnieder, G. Buess, B. Messerschmidt, T. Possner, �??Endoscope-compatible confocal microscope using a gradient index-lens system,�?? Opt. Commun. 188, 267-273 (2001).
[CrossRef]

Opt. Lett. (2)

U.S. Patent 4,416,505 (1)

L. D. Dickson, �??Method for making holographic optical elements with high diffraction efficiencies,�?? U.S. Patent 4,416,505 (1983).

Other (1)

B. R. Masters ed., Noninvasive Diagnostic Techniques in Ophthalmology, (Springer Verlag, 1990).
[CrossRef]

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Figures (4)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Outline of the dual prism GRISM (DPGRISM) based SECM probe consisting of a slow axis scanning motor (not shown), a pivoting cone holding the fiber and collimator, a DPGRISM and a modified 0.9 NA water immersion objective.

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

A photograph of the DPGRISM (A) that is enclosed within the 10 mm diameter SECM probe (B).

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

Image of an electron microscope grid (A), consisting of 6 µm bars separated by 25 µm spaces, and a cross-section of a single bar (B). Only a section of the full FOV is displayed here so that the bars can be more visible.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

Images of an onion obtained with the handheld SECM probe. Each image is 600×1300 pixels, 300 × 650 µm and taken at successively different depths as shown on the labels. The wavelength-encoded axis is along the (x) axis.

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