A comparative study of noise in supercontinuum light sources for ultra-high resolution optical coherence tomography

Sanjuan-Ferrer, Maria J. , Ivan Bravo Gonzalo, Magalie Bondu, Rasmus Dybbro Engelsholm, Thomas Feuchter, Peter M. Moselund, Lasse Leick, Ole Bang, Adrian Podoleanu

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    Supercontinuum (SC) light is a well-established technology, which finds applications in several domains ranging from chemistry to material science and imaging systems [1-2]. More specifically, its ultra-wide optical bandwidth and high average power make it an ideal tool for Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). Over the last 5 years, numerous examples have demonstrated its high potential [3-4] in this context. However, SC light sources present pulse-to-pulse intensity variation that can limit the performance of any OCT system [5] by degrading their signal to noise ratio (SNR). To this goal, we have studied and compared the noise of several SC light sources and evaluated how their noise properties affect the performance of Ultra-High Resolution OCT (UHR-OCT) at 1300 nm. We have measured several SC light sources with different parameters (pulse length, energy, seed repetition rate, etc.). We illustrate the different noise measurements and their impact on a state of the art UHR-OCT system producing images of skin. The sensitivity of the system was higher than 95 dB, with an axial resolution below 4μm.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE
    Number of pages6
    PublisherSPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering
    Publication date2017
    Article number100560O
    Publication statusPublished - 2017
    EventDesign and Quality for Biomedical Technologies X - San Francisco, United States
    Duration: 28 Jan 201729 Jan 2017
    Conference number: 10


    ConferenceDesign and Quality for Biomedical Technologies X
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CitySan Francisco
    SeriesProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright 2017 Society of Photo Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic electronic or print reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.


    • Optical and laser radiation (medical uses)
    • Patient diagnostic methods and instrumentation
    • Optical and laser radiation (biomedical imaging/measurement)
    • Light sources
    • Biomedical optical imaging
    • Skin
    • Supercontinuum generation
    • Skin images
    • Noise measurements
    • Noise properties
    • Signal-to-noise-ratio
    • Pulse-to-pulse intensity variation
    • Ultra-wide optical bandwidth
    • Ultra-high resolution optical coherence tomography
    • Supercontinuum light sources


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