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Biomedical Optics Express

Biomedical Optics Express

  • Editor: Joseph A. Izatt
  • Vol. 5, Iss. 7 — Jul. 1, 2014
  • pp: 2066–2081

Variations in optical coherence tomography resolution and uniformity: a multi-system performance comparison

Anthony Fouad, T. Joshua Pfefer, Chao-Wei Chen, Wei Gong, Anant Agrawal, Peter H. Tomlins, Peter D. Woolliams, Rebekah A. Drezek, and Yu Chen  »View Author Affiliations

Biomedical Optics Express, Vol. 5, Issue 7, pp. 2066-2081 (2014)

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Point spread function (PSF) phantoms based on unstructured distributions of sub-resolution particles in a transparent matrix have been demonstrated as a useful tool for evaluating resolution and its spatial variation across image volumes in optical coherence tomography (OCT) systems. Measurements based on PSF phantoms have the potential to become a standard test method for consistent, objective and quantitative inter-comparison of OCT system performance. Towards this end, we have evaluated three PSF phantoms and investigated their ability to compare the performance of four OCT systems. The phantoms are based on 260-nm-diameter gold nanoshells, 400-nm-diameter iron oxide particles and 1.5-micron-diameter silica particles. The OCT systems included spectral-domain and swept source systems in free-beam geometries as well as a time-domain system in both free-beam and fiberoptic probe geometries. Results indicated that iron oxide particles and gold nanoshells were most effective for measuring spatial variations in the magnitude and shape of PSFs across the image volume. The intensity of individual particles was also used to evaluate spatial variations in signal intensity uniformity. Significant system-to-system differences in resolution and signal intensity and their spatial variation were readily quantified. The phantoms proved useful for identification and characterization of irregularities such as astigmatism. Our multi-system results provide evidence of the practical utility of PSF-phantom-based test methods for quantitative inter-comparison of OCT system resolution and signal uniformity.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(110.3000) Imaging systems : Image quality assessment
(110.4850) Imaging systems : Optical transfer functions
(170.4500) Medical optics and biotechnology : Optical coherence tomography
(350.4800) Other areas of optics : Optical standards and testing

ToC Category:
Optical Coherence Tomography

Original Manuscript: March 10, 2014
Revised Manuscript: May 30, 2014
Manuscript Accepted: May 30, 2014
Published: June 9, 2014

Anthony Fouad, T. Joshua Pfefer, Chao-Wei Chen, Wei Gong, Anant Agrawal, Peter H. Tomlins, Peter D. Woolliams, Rebekah A. Drezek, and Yu Chen, "Variations in optical coherence tomography resolution and uniformity: a multi-system performance comparison," Biomed. Opt. Express 5, 2066-2081 (2014)

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