We show that computer-generated diffractive optical elements can be used to synthesize the infrared spectra of important compounds, and we describe a modified phase-retrieval algorithm useful for the design of elements of this type. In particular, we present the results of calculations of diffractive elements that are capable of synthesizing portions of the infrared spectra of gaseous hydrogen fluoride (HF) and trichloroethylene (TCE). Further, we propose a new type of correlation spectrometer that uses these diffractive elements rather than reference cells for the production of reference spectra. Storage of a large number of diffractive elements, each producing a synthetic spectrum corresponding to a different target compound, in compact-disk-like format will allow a spectrometer of this type to rapidly determine the composition of unknown samples. Other advantages of the proposed correlation spectrometer are also discussed.
© 1997 Optical Society of America
Michael B. Sinclair, Michael A. Butler, Anthony J. Ricco, and Stephen D. Senturia, "Synthetic spectra: a tool for correlation spectroscopy," Appl. Opt. 36, 3342-3348 (1997)