Wavefront shaping: A versatile tool to conquer multiple scattering in multidisciplinary fields

Zhipeng Yu, Huanhao Li, Tianting Zhong, Jung Hoon Park, Shengfu Cheng, Chi Man Woo, Qi Zhao, Jing Yao, Yingying Zhou, Xiazi Huang, Weiran Pang, Hansol Yoon, Yuecheng Shen, Honglin Liu, Yuanjin Zheng, Yong Keun Park, Lihong V. Wang, Puxiang Lai

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


Optical techniques offer a wide variety of applications as light-matter interactions provide extremely sensitive mechanisms to probe or treat target media. Most of these implementations rely on the usage of ballistic or quasi-ballistic photons to achieve high spatial resolution. However, the inherent scattering nature of light in biological tissues or tissue-like scattering media constitutes a critical obstacle that has restricted the penetration depth of non-scattered photons and hence limited the implementation of most optical techniques for wider applications. In addition, the components of an optical system are usually designed and manufactured for a fixed function or performance. Recent advances in wavefront shaping have demonstrated that scattering- or component-induced phase distortions can be compensated by optimizing the wavefront of the input light pattern through iteration or by conjugating the transmission matrix of the scattering medium. This offers unprecedented opportunities in many applications to achieve controllable optical delivery or detection at depths or dynamically configurable functionalities by using scattering media to substitute conventional optical components. In this article, the recent progress of wavefront shaping in multidisciplinary fields is reviewed, from optical focusing and imaging with scattering media, functionalized devices, modulation of mode coupling, and nonlinearity in multimode fiber to multimode fiber-based applications. Apart from insights into the underlying principles and recent advances in wavefront shaping implementations, practical limitations and roadmap for future development are discussed in depth. Looking back and looking forward, it is believed that wavefront shaping holds a bright future that will open new avenues for noninvasive or minimally invasive optical interactions and arbitrary control inside deep tissues. The high degree of freedom with multiple scattering will also provide unprecedented opportunities to develop novel optical devices based on a single scattering medium (generic or customized) that can outperform traditional optical components.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100292
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 13 Sept 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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