Research ArticleOPTICS

Microscopy with undetected photons in the mid-infrared

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Science Advances  14 Oct 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 42, eabd0264
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abd0264

Abstract

Owing to its capacity for unique (bio)-chemical specificity, microscopy with mid–infrared (IR) illumination holds tremendous promise for a wide range of biomedical and industrial applications. The primary limitation, however, remains detection, with current mid-IR detection technology often marrying inferior technical capabilities with prohibitive costs. Here, we experimentally show how nonlinear interferometry with entangled light can provide a powerful tool for mid-IR microscopy while only requiring near-IR detection with a silicon-based camera. In this proof-of-principle implementation, we demonstrate widefield imaging over a broad wavelength range covering 3.4 to 4.3 μm and demonstrate a spatial resolution of 35 μm for images containing 650 resolved elements. Moreover, we demonstrate that our technique is suitable for acquiring microscopic images of biological tissue samples in the mid-IR. These results form a fresh perspective for potential relevance of quantum imaging techniques in the life sciences.

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