A new low-coherence interferometric technique is proposed for measuring the group refractive indices of dispersive samples with high accuracy. A tandem configuration of interferometers is used to compensate for the asymmetrical distortion of interferograms that results from the broad spectrum of the light source. The group refractive index can be measured without knowledge of the geometrical thickness of the sample under test. The proposed technique can successfully measure even a thick sample. Computer calculations have shown the effectiveness of the proposed technique, which was verified by preliminary experiments; the difference between the experimental result and the catalog data was 7 × 10<sup>-4</sup> .
© 2003 Optical Society of America
(030.1640) Coherence and statistical optics : Coherence
(120.3180) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Interferometry
(120.4290) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Nondestructive testing
(160.4760) Materials : Optical properties
(260.2030) Physical optics : Dispersion
Akiko Hirai and Hirokazu Matsumoto, "Low-coherence tandem interferometer for measurement of group refractive index without knowledge of the thickness of the test sample," Opt. Lett. 28, 2112-2114 (2003)