THz optical design considerations and optimization for medical imaging applications

Shijun Sung, James Garritano, Neha Bajwa, Bryan Nowroozi, Nuria Llombart, Warren S. Grundfest, Zachary D. Taylor

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


THz imaging system design will play an important role making possible imaging of targets with arbitrary properties and geometries. This study discusses design consideration and imaging performance optimization techniques in THz quasioptical imaging system optics. Analysis of field and polarization distortion by off-axis parabolic (OAP) mirrors in THz imaging optics shows how distortions are carried in a series of mirrors while guiding the THz beam. While distortions of the beam profile by individual mirrors are not significant, these effects are compounded by a series of mirrors in antisymmetric orientation. It is shown that symmetric orientation of the OAP mirror effectively cancels this distortion to recover the original beam profile. Additionally, symmetric orientation can correct for some geometrical off-focusing due to misalignment. We also demonstrate an alternative method to test for overall system optics alignment by investigating the imaging performance of the tilted target plane. Asymmetric signal profile as a function of the target plane's tilt angle indicates when one or more imaging components are misaligned, giving a preferred tilt direction. Such analysis can offer additional insight into often elusive source device misalignment at an integrated system. Imaging plane tilting characteristics are representative of a 3-D modulation transfer function of the imaging system. A symmetric tilted plane is preferred to optimize imaging performance.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTerahertz Emitters, Receivers, and Applications V
EditorsAlexei N. Baranov, John M. Zavada, Dimitris Pavlidis, Manijeh Razeghi
ISBN (Electronic)9781628412260
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
EventTerahertz Emitters, Receivers, and Applications V - San Diego, United States
Duration: 17 Aug 201418 Aug 2014

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


ConferenceTerahertz Emitters, Receivers, and Applications V
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • Off axis parabolic mirrors
  • Optical design
  • Quasioptics
  • THz medical imaging


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