chapter  10
14 Pages

Deconvolution and Image Processing

When we look at a single, bright point in a conventional wide-field microscope, the image of the light is spread out into a complex three-dimensional shape, which resembles a couple of vases placed base to base or the old-fashioned children’s toy called a diabolo (Figure 10.1). At the focal plane (the base of these vases or the center of the diabolo), we see a cross section of this shape, which is the familiar Airy disk. The overall shape is known as the

point spread function

(PSF), that is, the function describing the spread of light emanating from a point. It is a much more complex shape than the confocal PSF (Chapter 5).