Holography and Interferometry

Holography is a technique which generates three-

dimensional images. It requires a laser with a

fixed wavelength and narrow linewidth emission.

In interferometry, the image pattern resulting

from superposition of two electromagnetic

waves, is measured to extract useful

information about the waves themselves

or material with which one or both

waves have been interacting.

Holography is a three-dimensional imaging technique produced and reconstructed using a laser light source. This technique is particularly useful in a diverse range of applications and markets, from interferometric microscopy to data storage processing, from anti-counterfeit measures for currency, credit cards, and personal identification documents to projection displays for the arts and entertainment industry. Conventional 2D imaging may also use enhanced holographic techniques to preview building projects or product concepts.

Holography requires a single light source to both illuminate an object as well as imprint on a substrate. IPG produces compact and cost-effective fiber laser sources for holographic applications, such as CW single frequency fiber lasers, (GLR, YLR-SF and ELR-SF), fiber amplifiers (YAR-LP-SF and EAR-LP-SF), as well as CW single-frequency Mid-IR lasers, CL-SF and CLT-SF. Typical bandwidths of IPG single frequency lasers are in the kHz to MHz range (coherence length of kilometers to 100s of meters).

IPG single frequency lasers offer more power in a compact package as compared to traditional solid state or ion gas sources. The higher power of IPG lasers also generates faster holographic images.

  laser holography
laser interferometry  

From spectroscopy to remote sensing, from mechanical and optical metrology to oceanography and seismology, from quantum mechanics to nuclear and plasma physics, the range of interferometry applications is extremely broad. To accommodate the broad spectrum of applications, IPG produces a diverse range of continuous wave and pulsed lasers most suitable for interferometric measurements.  These lasers fall into two major categories:

1) single-frequency CW lasers such as 1-100 W fiber lasers and fiber-pumped hybrid lasers and

2) Mid-IR ultrafast mode-locked lasers.


One example of an interferometric measurement used for non-destructive characterization of materials in mechanical engineering is shearography, a method similar to holographic interferometry. It is widely used in production and development in aerospace, wind rotor blades, automotive, and materials development and testing research. Shearography uses coherent light for nondestructive testing of materials, strain measurement, and vibration analysis. Advantages of shearography are high area throughput, non-contact interrogation, relative insensitivity to environmental disturbances, and good performance on honeycomb materials.   shearography
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