Adaptive optics and aberrations correction for super-resolution microscopy
The advent of fluorescence microscopy has enabled systems to reach a resolution of a few tens of nanometers in the three dimensions. Super-resolution is acheived by the localisation of isolated single molecules to a precision better than the diffraction limit. These methods are particularly sensitive to optical aberrations which directly reduce localisation success, accuracy and precision. Adaptive optics (AO) is a technique used to correct aberrations in optical systems. Microscopy images are distorted by aberrations - whether they are coming from the microscope system, index of refraction mismatch or more complex aberrations coming from the sample itself. In fact, it is the aberrations of the sample that have made the application of AO to microscopy challenging. First, existing end-to-end modelling tools to simulate aberrated point spread functions (PSFs) and their correction with AO will be improved upon. The modelling tool will be representative of microscope, sample aberrations and reproduce current project developments. Innovative approaches will be investigated to improve image resolution, which may include sensorless optimisation, phase retrieval or direct wavefront sensing. Secondly, the selected options will be investigated both in simulations and tested in the lab using a simplified microscope setup. Finally, they will be implemented into a real-time computer and performance evaluated using biological samples.