I spent a very memorable semester at TONA as a part of my Erasmus Mundus MSc in Photonics course.
With the ever-increasing prevalence of minimally invasive procedures (MIP) in the medical world, the designing of endoscopes, essential in MIP, becomes more and more challenging. Since the continuous and ubiquitous need for miniaturization is starting to outmatch the possibilities offered by the combination of conventional fibre optics and micro-optics, novel approaches are necessary in order to ensure the advancement of endoscopy and consequently of MIP.
In conventional fibre bundles the phase-relation between cores is not conserved during the propagation of an electrical field and as such extra micro-optics at the distal end are necessary in order to be able to focus or scan the exiting light or achieve a certain field of view (FOV).
We have designed a new type of Microstructured Optical Fibre (MOF) which could be used as an endoscope or for beam-delivery. Distal end mechanical scanning and micro-optics are no longer required since resolution and Field-Of-View (FOV) solely depend on core geometry and NA, and on the ability to shape the wavefront at the proximal end of the MOF. As with all small diameter endoscopes, collection of the backreflected light is challenging given its low power. Optical Coherence Tomography [ ] , an imaging method based on the Michelson interferometer, has proven to be an excellent method for imaging biological tissue which has a low reflectivity. In this thesis, which is primarily an experimental one, you will face the challenge of building an OCT setup around this new MOF . You will perform a short literature study and state-of-the-art review to assess the OCT setup best suited for the MOF after which you will start the construction of the selected setup. After the setup has been made, you will characterize its performance: lateral and axial resolution, depth of field, S/N ratio etc…
However, as this work is very challenging changes can be made to the theoretical/experimental ratio of the work and the goals can be redefined in concert between the student and the promotor or supervisor.
[] Schmitt, M., J., “Optical Coherence Tomography,” IEEE Journal of selected topics in Quantum Electronics, Vol. 5, No. 4, 1205-1215 (1999)
Goals of the work: