OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 39, Iss. 25 — Sep. 1, 2000
  • pp: 4621–4628

Imaging of spheres and surface profiling by confocal microscopy

J. Felix Aguilar, Mario Lera, and Colin J. R. Sheppard  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 39, Issue 25, pp. 4621-4628 (2000)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (484 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



An investigation of the imaging of spheres can aid in understanding details of the surface profiling method of confocal microscopy. The use of semicircular masks to eliminate artifacts in confocal profiling is investigated experimentally. A theoretical treatment of image formation for a spherical object in reflection confocal microscopy is presented. For large spheres a simple approximate theory is described and is shown to be equivalent to application of the Kirchhoff theory for surface scattering.

© 2000 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.6660) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Surface measurements, roughness
(170.6900) Medical optics and biotechnology : Three-dimensional microscopy
(180.0180) Microscopy : Microscopy
(180.1790) Microscopy : Confocal microscopy

Original Manuscript: December 23, 1999
Revised Manuscript: April 12, 2000
Published: September 1, 2000

J. Felix Aguilar, Mario Lera, and Colin J. R. Sheppard, "Imaging of spheres and surface profiling by confocal microscopy," Appl. Opt. 39, 4621-4628 (2000)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. W. Weise, P. Zinin, T. Wilson, A. Briggs, S. Boseck, “Imaging of spheres with the confocal scanning optical microscope,” Opt. Lett. 21, 1800–1802 (1996). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. D. M. Maurice, “Cellular membrane activity in the corneal endothelium of the intact eye,” Experientia 15, 1094–1095 (1968). [CrossRef]
  3. C. J. Koester, “A scanning mirror microscope with optical sectioning characteristics: applications in ophthalmology,” Appl. Opt. 19, 1749–1757 (1980). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. C. J. R. Sheppard, D. K. Hamilton, “High resolution stereoscopic imaging,” Appl. Opt. 22, 886–887 (1983). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. P. Török, C. J. R. Sheppard, Z. Laczik, “Dark-field and differential phase contrast imaging modes in confocal microscopy using a half-aperture stop,” Optik 103, 101–106 (1996).
  6. P. Török, C. J. R. Sheppard, Z. Laczik, “The effect of half-stop lateral misalignment on imaging of dark-field and stereoscopic confocal microscopes,” Appl. Opt. 35, 6732–6739 (1996). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. C. J. R. Sheppard, J. T. Sheridan, “Micrometrology of thick structures,” in Optical Storage and Scanning Technology, T. Wilson, ed., Proc. SPIE1139, 32–39 (1989). [CrossRef]
  8. C. J. R. Sheppard, “General considerations of diffraction theory of 3-D imaging,” Eur. J. Cell Biol. Suppl. 25, 29–32 (1989).
  9. J. T. Sheridan, C. J. R. Sheppard, “Diffraction by striated muscle fibres: application to image modelling,” Bioimaging 1, 214–227 (1993). [CrossRef]
  10. J. T. Sheridan, C. J. R. Sheppard, “The coherent imaging of periodic thick fine isolated structures,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 10, 614–632 (1993). [CrossRef]
  11. J. T. Sheridan, C. J. R. Sheppard, “Modelling of images of square-wave gratings and isolated edges using rigorous diffraction theory,” Opt. Commun. 105, 367–378 (1994). [CrossRef]
  12. C. J. R. Sheppard, T. J. Connolly, M. Gu, “Scattering by a one-dimensional rough surface and surface reconstruction by confocal imaging,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 70, 1409–1412 (1993). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  13. N. Streibl, “Three-dimensional imaging by a microscope,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 2, 121–127 (1985). [CrossRef]
  14. C. J. R. Sheppard, M. Gu, “Modeling of 3-D brightfield microscope systems,” in Image Reconstruction and Restoration, T. J. Schulz, D. L. Snyder, eds., Proc. SPIE2302, 352–358 (1994). [CrossRef]
  15. C. J. R. Sheppard, T. J. Connolly, M. Gu, “Imaging and reconstruction for rough surface scattering in the Kirchhoff approximation by confocal microscopy,” J. Mod. Opt. 40, 2407–2421 (1993). [CrossRef]
  16. C. J. R. Sheppard, T. J. Connolly, M. Gu, “The scattering potential for imaging in the reflection geometry,” Opt. Commun. 117, 16–19 (1995). [CrossRef]
  17. C. J. R. Sheppard, C. J. Cogswell, “Three-dimensional image formation in confocal microscopy,” J. Microsc. 159, 179–194 (1990). [CrossRef]
  18. C. J. R. Sheppard, “The spatial frequency cut-off in three dimensional imaging. II,” Optik 74, 128–129 (1986).
  19. C. J. R. Sheppard, M. Gu, X. Q. Mao, “Three-dimensional coherent transfer function in a reflection-mode confocal scanning microscope,” Opt. Commun. 81, 281–284 (1991). [CrossRef]
  20. C. J. R. Sheppard, M. Gu, Y. Kawata, S. Kawata, “Three-dimensional transfer functions for high aperture systems obeying the sine condition,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 11, 593–598 (1994). [CrossRef]
  21. L. D. Landau, E. M. Lifshitz, Quantum Mechanics (Nonrelativistic Theory) (Pergamon, Oxford, 1959).
  22. P. M. Morse, H. Feshbach, Methods of Theoretical Physics (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1978).
  23. J. W. Nicholson, “Diffraction of short waves by a rigid sphere,” Philos. Mag. 11, 193–205 (1906). [CrossRef]
  24. J. W. Nicholson, “The scattering of light by a large conducting sphere,” Proc. Math. Soc. London 9, 67–80 (1910).
  25. J. W. Nicholson, “The scattering of light by a large conducting sphere,” Proc. Math. Soc. London 11, 277–284 (1912).
  26. T. J. l’A. Bromwich, “The scattering of plane electric waves by a sphere,” Phil. Trans. R. Soc. London 220, 189–206 (1920).
  27. R. N. Bracewell, The Fourier Transform and Its Applications, 2nd ed. (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1978).
  28. C. J. R. Sheppard, K. G. Larkin, “Effect of numerical aperture on interference fringe spacing,” Appl. Opt. 34, 4731–4734 (1995). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  29. C. J. R. Sheppard, C. J. Cogswell, “Reflection and transmission confocal microscopy,” in Optics in Medicine, Biology and Environmental Research, G. von Bally, S. Khanna, eds., Proceedings of the First International Conference on Optics within Life Sciences, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, 1990 (Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1993), pp. 310–315.

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited