Polarimetric imaging provides valuable insights into the polarization state of light interacting with a sample. It can infer crucial birefringence properties of specimens without using labels, thereby facilitating the diagnosis of diseases such as cancer and osteoarthritis. In this study, we present a novel polarimetric coded ptychography (pol-CP) approach that enables high-resolution, high-throughput gigapixel birefringence imaging on a chip. Our platform deviates from traditional lens-based systems by employing an integrated polarimetric coded sensor for lensless coherent diffraction imaging. Utilizing Jones calculus, we quantitatively determine the birefringence retardance and orientation information of biospecimens from the recovered images. Our portable pol-CP prototype can resolve the 435 nm linewidth on the resolution target, and the imaging field of view for a single acquisition is limited only by the detector size of 41 mm2. The prototype allows for the acquisition of gigapixel birefringence images with a 180 mm2 field of view in , a performance that rivals high-end whole slide scanner but at a small fraction of the cost. To demonstrate its biomedical applications, we perform high-throughput imaging of malaria-infected blood smears, locating parasites using birefringence contrast. We also generate birefringence maps of label-free thyroid smears to identify thyroid follicles. Notably, the recovered birefringence maps emphasize the same regions as autofluorescence images, underscoring the potential for rapid on-site evaluation of label-free biopsies. Our approach provides a turnkey and portable solution for lensless polarimetric analysis on a chip, with promising applications in disease diagnosis, crystal screening, and label-free chemical imaging, particularly in resource-constrained environments.
2023, 11(12): 2242
Conventional ptychography translates an object through a localized probe beam to widen the field of view in real space. Fourier ptychography translates the object spectrum through a pupil aperture to expand the Fourier bandwidth in reciprocal space. Here we report an imaging modality, termed synthetic aperture ptychography (SAP), to get the best of both techniques. In SAP, we illuminate a stationary object using an extended plane wave and translate a coded image sensor at the far field for data acquisition. The coded layer attached on the sensor modulates the object exit waves and serves as an effective ptychographic probe for phase retrieval. The sensor translation process in SAP synthesizes a large complex-valued wavefront at the intermediate aperture plane. By propagating this wavefront back to the object plane, we can widen the field of view in real space and expand the Fourier bandwidth in reciprocal space simultaneously. We validate the SAP approach with transmission targets and reflection silicon microchips. A 20-mm aperture was synthesized using a 5-mm sensor, achieving a fourfold gain in resolution and 16-fold gain in field of view for object recovery. In addition, the thin sample requirement in ptychography is no longer required in SAP. One can digitally propagate the recovered exit wave to any axial position for post-acquisition refocusing. The SAP scheme offers a solution for far-field sub-diffraction imaging without using lenses. It can be adopted in coherent diffraction imaging setups with radiation sources from visible light, extreme ultraviolet, and X-ray, to electron.
2022, 10(7): 07001624