Abstract

In the present work, the Talbot effect of a square grating is analyzed when light is reflected from a rough surface. It is shown theoretically that the scattered light intensity in the Fresnel diffraction limit depends on statistical properties of the rough surface, the angle of incidence of the light, the grating period, and a geometric coefficient, related to the ratio of distance of the rough surface and the observation plane from the grating. At Talbot distances of the grating, the surface height difference function, in terms of multiplication of the Talbot number, the grating period, and the geometric coefficient is the modulation transfer function (MTF) of the scattering in reflection from the rough surface. If the argument of the height difference function is larger than twice the surface correlation length, the height difference function is constant for different spatial frequencies. Therefore, the square wave is reproduced with smaller contrast. The surface roughness can be obtained by measuring the contrast at different incident angles. It is also shown that the contrast measurements in both reflection and transmission, provide the refractive index of transparent samples with a rough surface. In experimental studies, the roughness of three metal standard rough surfaces are determined at different angles of incidence. Also, the refractive index of a sheet glass with a rough surface is obtained. The results are quite consistent.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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