Abstract

A noninterferometric method for obtaining profiles of axially symmetric transparent liquid droplets is described. The drops are illuminated along the symmetry axis by a uniform parallel beam whose intensity distribution is recorded at the focal plane of a lens placed behind the drop. In some conditions and within the geometrical optics approach, it is possible to reconstruct the profile of the drop from this intensity distribution except for the length scale factor, which, if necessary, may be provided by an additional simple measurement. Because of CCD cameras and digital image processing, this method is an interesting alternative technique for measuring drop profile shapes with considerable accuracy when interferometry is unwieldy. We also analyze the diffraction features of the intensity distribution to clarify the extent that they affect the approach that we used and to establish additional information that they may provide.

© 1995 Optical Society of America

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