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Optical Transfer Function of a microscope

  1. Sep 23, 2014 #1
    Hi all,

    I am wondering in the 3D optical transfer function as shown below:

    The m and n axes represent support of lateral spatial frequencies and the s axes axial. If we were talking about a microscope then it has whats called the missing cone of information-lost axial frequencies. But what i don't understand is why there is only a missing dip in the middle, why is it not flat and only has dimensions m and n. The image suggests that the 3D "lobes" represent mid spatial frequencies in the s axis with it dipping to zero at the origin and at the high end frequency cut off. If the height of the OTF lobes does in fact represent axial information, what is this information? If it can't transfer low or high axial frequencies, why can it transfer mid s axes spatial frequencies? Unless i am misinterpreting the 3D OTF.

    Thanks for the help!
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 23, 2014 #2
    Note that the s-axis is centered about zero. Therefore very low axial frequencies are always transmitted, except in the very center. The high-frequency cutoff changes as you increase lateral frequency.
  4. Sep 28, 2014 #3
    Thanks for that, i'm still not clear though why the OTF has considerable support along the s-axis
  5. Sep 28, 2014 #4

    Andy Resnick

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    You are asking a fairly advanced question about vector diffraction- can you give me an idea of your 'comfort level'?
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