We present a photon counting range-intensity image strategy based on a single-photon detector in low-light level environments. In this Letter, a composite modulation method over the pulse sequence was used for the first time, to the best of our knowledge, which combined pulse-position modulation and pulse-intensity modulation. This composite modulation method could obtain range and intensity of the detected target at the same time. Besides, angle-angle information could be provided from the scanner or detector array. Thus, a range-intensity image of the target became feasible. For demonstrating this photon counting range-intensity image strategy, a proof-of-principle laboratory system was established. In low-light level environments, a range-intensity image of multiple similar targets was obtained successfully with the range accuracy of centimeter level and intensity error of 1%. Compared with the range image, a range-intensity image could better reorganize and identify similar targets.
© 2014 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: December 2, 2013
Revised Manuscript: February 21, 2014
Manuscript Accepted: March 16, 2014
Published: April 14, 2014
Zijing Zhang, Yuannan Xu, Long Wu, Yong Zhang, Yuan Zhao, and Jianzhong Su, "Photon counting range-intensity image strategy in low-light level environments," Opt. Lett. 39, 2467-2470 (2014)