A novel phase-control method with application to phase-shifting interferometry is presented. The linear polarization state of an external (green) light beam is recorded on a bacteriorhodopsin film, and this polarization state is read by a circular polarized (red) laser beam. By reading the bacteriorhodopsin film, the original (red) wave reverses its circularity and becomes phase shifted by an amount that is dependent on the polarization of the external (green) beam. This method of phase control can be applied in a two-beam interferometer in which the test and reference waves are orthogonally polarized, which allows one to obtain phase modulation without moving parts inside the interferometer.
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