From three interferograms with unknown phase shifts, an innovative phase retrieval approach based on the normalized difference maps is proposed. Using the subtraction operation between interferograms, two difference maps without background can be achieved. To eliminate the amplitude inequality of difference maps, normalization process is employed so that two normalized difference maps are obtained. Finally, combining two normalized difference maps and two-step phase retrieval algorithm, the measured phase with high precision can be retrieved rapidly. Comparing with the conventional two-step phase retrieval algorithm with high-pass filtering, the accuracy and processing time of the proposed approach are greatly improved. Importantly, when the phase shift is close to π, almost all two-step algorithms become invalid, but the proposed approach still performs well. That is, the proposed normalized difference maps approach is suitable for the phase retrieval with arbitrary phase shifts.
© 2014 Optical Society of America
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