High-throughput terahertz imaging: progress and challenges

Light Sci Appl. 2023 Sep 15;12(1):233. doi: 10.1038/s41377-023-01278-0.


Many exciting terahertz imaging applications, such as non-destructive evaluation, biomedical diagnosis, and security screening, have been historically limited in practical usage due to the raster-scanning requirement of imaging systems, which impose very low imaging speeds. However, recent advancements in terahertz imaging systems have greatly increased the imaging throughput and brought the promising potential of terahertz radiation from research laboratories closer to real-world applications. Here, we review the development of terahertz imaging technologies from both hardware and computational imaging perspectives. We introduce and compare different types of hardware enabling frequency-domain and time-domain imaging using various thermal, photon, and field image sensor arrays. We discuss how different imaging hardware and computational imaging algorithms provide opportunities for capturing time-of-flight, spectroscopic, phase, and intensity image data at high throughputs. Furthermore, the new prospects and challenges for the development of future high-throughput terahertz imaging systems are briefly introduced.

Publication types

  • Review