(plural Serial time-encoded amplified microscopys)
- (electronics) A fast real-time optical imaging technique that provides ~10 MHz frame rate, ~100 ps shutter speed, and ~30 dB (× 1000) optical image gain. As of today, STEAM holds world records for shutter speed and frame rate in continuous real-time imaging. STEAM employs the photonic time stretch along with optical image amplification to circumvent the fundamental trade-off between sensitivity and speed that affects virtually all optical imaging and sensing systems. This method employs a single-pixel photodetector, eliminating the need for the detector array and read-out time limitations. Avoiding these problems and featuring optical image amplification for dramatic improvement in sensitivity at high image acquisition rates, STEAM's shutter speed is many times faster than the state-of-the-art CCD and CMOS cameras. Its frame rate is 1000 times faster than fastest CCD cameras and 10-100 times faster than fastest CMOS cameras.