High-speed optical imaging is an essential technology in many scientific, medical, and industrial fields. Particularly, laser-induced plasmas are transient phenomena of microseconds duration and inherent complexity that have a significant importance for understanding the interaction of light and matter, as well as in fields such as spectroscopy and manufacturing. Gragston et al. present a passive optical imaging technique referred as to multiplexed structured image capture (MUSIC) for characterization of the laser-induced ionization process and measurement of electron density of a laser-induced plasma generated with a 532-nm nanosecond laser. Multiplexed images with temporal resolution of about 1 ns were achieved using a relatively simple and compact optical setup that included optical delay circuits (mirrors and beam splitters) that allowed for the plasma emission to travel in three different paths, spatial modulation components (Rochi rulings) for encoding the image with a different spatial modulation pattern, and a single ICCD camera. MUSIC results are reported in good agreement with experimental data from coherent microwave scattering and numerical plasma modelling. Gragston et al.’s approach for high-speed passive imaging represents an important contribution to the technologies available for understanding high-speed and single-shot experiments with optical access restrictions and compact optical setups.
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