We propose a variant of the heterodyne holography scheme that combines the properties of off-axis and phase-shifting holography. This scheme makes it possible to filter off numerically the zero-order image alias and the technical noise of the reference. It is then possible to record and reconstruct holographic images at an extremely low signal level. We show experimentally that the sensitivity of the method is limited only by the quantum nature of photons.
© 2007 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: November 7, 2006
Revised Manuscript: December 21, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: January 12, 2007
Published: March 19, 2007
M. Gross and M. Atlan, "Digital holography with ultimate sensitivity," Opt. Lett. 32, 909-911 (2007)