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Journal of the Optical Society of America A: Optics, Image Science and Vision

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Speckle, Laser Doppler velocimeter, Medical instruments and apparatus


The ultimate objective of laser speckle flowmetry (and a host of specific implementations such as laser speckle contrast analysis, LASCA or LSCA; laser speckle spatial contrast analysis, LSSCA; laser speckle temporal contrast analysis, LSTCA; etc.) is to infer flow velocity from the observed speckle contrast. Despite numerous demonstrations over the past 25 years of such a qualitative relationship, no convincing quantitative relationship has been proven. One reason is a persistent mathematical error that has been propagated by a host of workers; another is a misconception about the proper autocorrelation function for ordered flow. Still another hindrance has been uncertainty in the specific relationship between decorrelation time and local flow velocity. Herein we attempt to dispel some of these errors and misconceptions with the intent of turning laser speckle flowmetry into a quantitative tool. Specifically we review the underlying theory, explore the impact of various analytic models for relating measured intensity fluctuations to scatterer motion, and address some of the practical issues associated with the measurement and subsequent data processing.


This paper was published in Journal of the Optical Society of America A and is made available as an electronic reprint with the permission of OSA. The paper can be found at the following URL on the OSA website: Systematic or multiple reproduction or distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.



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