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Title: Achromatic self-referencing interferometer

A self-referencing Mach-Zehnder interferometer is described for accurately measuring laser wavefronts over a broad wavelength range (for example, 600 nm to 900 nm). The apparatus directs a reference portion of an input beam to a reference arm and a measurement portion of the input beam to a measurement arm, recombines the output beams from the reference and measurement arms, and registers the resulting interference pattern ([open quotes]first[close quotes] interferogram) at a first detector. Optionally, subportions of the measurement portion are diverted to second and third detectors, which respectively register intensity and interferogram signals which can be processed to reduce the first interferogram's sensitivity to input noise. The reference arm includes a spatial filter producing a high quality spherical beam from the reference portion, a tilted wedge plate compensating for off-axis aberrations in the spatial filter output, and mirror collimating the radiation transmitted through the tilted wedge plate. The apparatus includes a thermally and mechanically stable baseplate which supports all reference arm optics, or at least the spatial filter, tilted wedge plate, and the collimator. The tilted wedge plate is mounted adjustably with respect to the spatial filter and collimator, so that it can be maintained in an orientation in whichmore » it does not introduce significant wave front errors into the beam propagating through the reference arm. The apparatus is polarization insensitive and has an equal path length configuration enabling measurement of radiation from broadband as well as closely spaced laser line sources. 3 figures.« less
Inventors:
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
5031415
Assignee:
Dept. of Energy, Washington, DC (United States) PTO; EDB-94-076807
Patent Number(s):
US 5305074; A
Application Number:
PPN: US 7-914345
Contract Number:
W-7405-ENG-48
Resource Relation:
Patent File Date: 17 Jul 1992
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
42 ENGINEERING; LASERS; DIAGNOSTIC TECHNIQUES; MACH-ZEHNDER INTERFEROMETER; DESIGN; LASER RADIATION; ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION; INTERFEROMETERS; MEASURING INSTRUMENTS; RADIATIONS; 426002* - Engineering- Lasers & Masers- (1990-)