An “all-optical” approach for the realization of adaptive optical systems potentially containing in excess of a million spatial-resolution elements is reported. A phase-measurement and -compensation technique called an interference phase loop is employed in conjunction with a monolithic optically addressed spatial light modulator (SLM). Wave-front phase compensation and shaping, and the ability to ignore amplitude fluctuations and compensate phase in real time over multiple π radians of dynamic range, were demonstrated in two discrete-channel laboratory test systems containing one and nineteen resolution elements. All-optical phase compensation with a monolithic SLM was also successfully demonstrated.
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