Abstract

A method based on the common-path heterodyne interferometer system is proposed for the calibration of a Soleil–Babinet compensator. In this heterodyne interferometer system, which consists of two acousto-optic modulators, the compensator being calibrated is inserted into the signal path. By using the reference beam as the benchmark and a lock-in amplifier (SR844) as the phase retardation collector, retardations of 0 and λ (one wavelength) can be located accurately, and an arbitrary retardation between 0 and λ can also be measured accurately and continuously. By fitting a straight line to the experimental data, we obtained a linear correlation coefficient (R) of 0.995, which indicates that this system is capable of linear phase detection. The experimental results demonstrate determination accuracies of 0.212° and 0.26° and measurement precisions of 0.054° and 0.608° for retardations of 0 and λ, respectively.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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