We propose and demonstrate a novel differential two-signal technique of coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) imaging microscopy using a picosecond (ps) optical parametric oscillator (OPO). By adjusting a Lyot filter inside the cavity, we operated the OPO oscillating in two stable modes separated by a few nanometers. The CARS images generated by the two modes are separated by a spectrograph behind the microscope setup, and their differential image is directly obtained by balanced lock-in detection. The feasibility of the technique is experimentally verified by imaging micrometer-sized polystyrene beads immersed in water.
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