In a developmental technique of real-time adjacent-pair imaging shearography, a thin film of bacteriorhodopsin is used to record shearograms in argon-laser light for immediate readout in helium/neon-laser light. Unlike conventional silver-halide-based photographic film, bacteriorhodopsin can be used as a real-time recording medium because it yields an image immediately upon exposure and is optically erasable. Bacteriorhodopsin also offers the advantage of resolution as high as 5,000 lines/mm — comparable to the resolutions of silver-halide-based films and much greater than the 80 lines/mm typical of the charge-coupled-device video cameras used heretofore in real-time shearography. Issues to be addressed in subsequent development include the difficulty of recording over a previously recorded image at the recording wavelength, the need for Fourier-transform optics for readout, the need to optimize the optics to realize the full potential for high resolution, and the relative insensitivity of bacteriorhodopsin film (about a tenth of that of silver-halide-based film).

This work was done by Colleen Fitzpatrick of Rice Systems, Inc., for Kennedy Space Center. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free on-line at www.nasatech.com under the Physical Sciences category, or circle no. 161 on the TSP Order Card in this issue to receive a copy by mail ($5 charge).

In accordance with Public Law 96-517, the contractor has elected to retain title to this invention. Inquiries concerning rights for its commercial use should be addressed to:

Colleen Fitzpatrick
Rice Systems, Inc.
1150 Main Street, Suite C
Irvine, CA 92614
(714) 553-8768
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Refer to KSC-11838, volume and number of this NASA Tech Briefs issue, and the page number.


NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the January, 1998 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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