Spectral-domain spectrally-encoded endoscopy

Opt Express. 2007 Mar 5;15(5):2432-44. doi: 10.1364/oe.15.002432.


Spectrally-encoded miniature endoscopy uses a single optical fiber and wavelength division multiplexing to obtain macroscopic images through miniature, flexible probes. In turn, it has the potential to enable two- and three-dimensional imaging within the body at locations that are currently difficult to access with conventional endoscopes. Here we present a novel detection scheme for spectrally-encoded endoscopy using spectral-domain interferometry. Compared to previous time-domain configurations, this new detection method results in greater than 1000-fold increase in sensitivity (77 dB), a 6-fold increase in imaging speed (30 volumes per second), and a 2-fold increase in depth range (2.8 mm). We demonstrate spectrally-encoded, spectral-domain detection by conducting video-rate, three-dimensional imaging in a variety of specimens, including the paws of a mouse embryo and excised human ear bones. Our results show that this new technology enables video rate spectrally-encoded endoscopy and will therefore be useful for a variety of minimally invasive medical applications.