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Digital Holographic Microscope Trades for Extant Life Detection Applications

Lindensmith, Christian and Wallace, J. Kent and Rider, Stephanie and Serabyn, Eugene and Bedrossian, Manuel and Nadeau, Jay (2019) Digital Holographic Microscope Trades for Extant Life Detection Applications. In: 2019 IEEE Aerospace Conference. IEEE , Piscataway, NJ, pp. 1-7. ISBN 9781538668542.

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Optical microscopy is one of the key technologies needed for detection of extant life on other solar system bodies. Microscopic images can be used to identify the presence of cell-like objects and discriminate probable cells from other abiotic particles of similar scale through observations of morphology. Image sequences can be used to determine particle density through observation of Brownian motion, enabling discrimination of liquid-filled vesicles from solid mineral grains; non- Brownian motion that is also inconsistent with background flow can also indicate biotic particles. Phase-sensitive imaging modes allow measurement of index of refraction and can be used to image transparent cells that might otherwise require the addition of stains. Because of the likely limited energy available for replication on the moons of Jupiter and Saturn, potential unicellular life would likely be present only at very low concentrations requiring a search through substantial volumes of material at very high resolution. We have been developing digital holographic microscopes (DHM) that addresses the need for high resolution search at low concentrations. Our DHM designs provide both the sub micrometer resolution necessary to detect the smallest forms of life and the high throughput needed to do so at very low concentrations. A significant feature of the holographic recording is that all objects in a large volume can be recorded simultaneously, without the need for focus or tracking to image individual objects. We have demonstrated two promising DHM architectures for possible use in potential future life detection missions - one using conventional optics and one using gradient index optics in a “lensless” arrangement. We compare the two designs, their trade spaces, and the features that might make each preferable for specific applications.

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Nadeau, Jay0000-0001-5258-0076
Additional Information:© 2019 IEEE. The work described in this paper was performed in part at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and in part at the California Institute of Technology under grants GBMF-4037 and GBMF-4038 from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationGBMF-4037
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationGBMF-4038
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190710-160648364
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Official Citation:C. Lindensmith, E. Serabyn, J. K. Wallace, M. Bedrossian, S. Rider and J. L. Nadeau, "Digital Holographic Microscope Trades for Extant Life Detection Applications," 2019 IEEE Aerospace Conference, Big Sky, MT, USA, 2019, pp. 1-7. doi: 10.1109/AERO.2019.8742111
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:97044
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:10 Jul 2019 23:11
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:25

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