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Path Matched Vibration Insensitive Fizeau Interferometer

by Kimbrough, Bradley Trent.

Abstract (Summary)
An on-axis, vibration insensitive, polarization Fizeau interferometer is realized through the use of a novel pixelated mask spatial carrier phase shifting technique in conjunction with a low coherence source and a polarization path matching mechanism. In this arrangement, coherence is used to effectively separate out the orthogonally polarized test and reference beam components for interference. With both the test and the reference beams on-axis, the common path cancellation advantages of the Fizeau interferometer are maintained. Microwave modulation of a high powered red laser diode is used to create a 15 mW laser source having a coherence length of 250 um with minimal sidelobe ringing. With a 15 mW source, the maximum camera shutter speed, used when measuring a 4% reflector, was 150 usec, resulting in very robust vibration insensitivity. Additionally, stray light interference is substantially reduced due to the source’s short coherence, allowing the measurement of thin transparent optics. Experimental results show the performance of this new interferometer to be within the specifications of commercial phase shifting interferometers. This work starts with a basic review of interferometry, phase shifting, and polarization as a lead in to a description of the theory and operation of the pixelated mask spatial carrier phase shifting technique. An analysis of the standard Fizeau Interferometer is then given. This is followed by detailed theoretical discussion of the path matched vibration insensitive (PMVI) Fizeau, which includes a theoretical model of the effects of multiple beam return from the test surface when measuring high value reflectors. The coherence 14 properties of laser diodes are then discussed, a theoretical model for the effects of high frequency drive current is derived, and experimental results are given. Finally, the performance of the PMVI Fizeau is experimentally analyzed, potential error sources discussed, and suggestions for improvements provided. 15
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School:The University of Arizona

School Location:USA - Arizona

Source Type:Master's Thesis

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