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The combination of two opposing objective lenses in 4Pi fluorescence microscopy significantly improves the axial resolution and increases the collection efficiency. Combining 4Pi microscopy with other super-resolution techniques has resulted in the highest three-dimensional (3D) resolution in fluorescence microscopy to date. It has previously been shown that the performance of 4Pi microscopy is significantly affected by aberrations. However, a comprehensive description of 4Pi microscope aberrations has been missing. In this paper, we introduce an approach to describe aberrations in a 4Pi cavity through a new functional representation. We discuss the focusing properties of 4Pi systems affected by aberrations and discuss the implications for adaptive optics schemes for 4Pi microscopes based on this new insight.

Original publication




Journal article


Opt Express

Publication Date





14049 - 14058