We built a device sensitive to the birefringence of the retinal nerve fiber layer for biometric purposes. A circle of diameter on the retina was scanned around the optic disk with a spot of light from a laser diode. The nonbirefringent blood vessels indenting or displacing the retinal nerve fiber layer were seen as “blips” in the measured birefringence-derived signal. For comparison, the reflection–absorption signature of the blood vessel pattern in the scanned circle was also measured. The birefringence-derived signal proved to add useful information to the reflectance–absorption signature for retinal biometric scanning.
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