Abstract

We demonstrate a novel ghost imaging (GI) scheme based on one single-photon-counting detector with subsequent photon statistics analysis. The key idea is that instead of measuring correlations between the object and reference beams such as in standard GI schemes, the light of the two beams is superimposed. The photon statistics analysis of this mixed light allows us to determine the photon number distribution as well as to calculate the central second-order correlation coefficient. The image information is obtained as a function of the spatial resolution of the reference beam. The performance of this photon-statistics-based GI system with one single detector (PS-GI) is investigated in terms of visibility and resolution. Finally, the knowledge of the complete photon statistics allows easy access to higher correlation coefficients such that we are able to perform here third- and fourth-order GI. The PS-GI concept can be seen as a complement to already existing GI technologies thus enabling a broader dissemination of GI as a superior metrology technique, paving the road for new applications in particular with advanced photon counting detectors.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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