Determination of reference values for optical properties of liquid phantoms based on Intralipid and India ink

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A multi-center study has been set up to accurately characterize the optical properties of diffusive liquid phantoms based on Intralipid and India ink at near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths. Nine research laboratories from six countries adopting different measurement techniques, instrumental set-ups, and data analysis methods determined at their best the optical properties and relative uncertainties of diffusive dilutions prepared with common samples of the two compounds. By exploiting a suitable statistical model, comprehensive reference values at three NIR wavelengths for the intrinsic absorption coefficient of India ink and the intrinsic reduced scattering coefficient of Intralipid-20% were determined with an uncertainty of about 2% or better, depending on the wavelength considered, and 1%, respectively. Even if in this study we focused on particular batches of India ink and Intralipid, the reference values determined here represent a solid and useful starting point for preparing diffusive liquid phantoms with accurately defined optical properties. Furthermore, due to the ready availability, low cost, long-term stability and batch-to-batch reproducibility of these compounds, they provide a unique fundamental tool for the calibration and performance assessment of diffuse optical spectroscopy instrumentation intended to be used in laboratory or clinical environment. Finally, the collaborative work presented here demonstrates that the accuracy level attained in this work for optical properties of diffusive phantoms is reliable. (C) 2014 Optical Society of America


  • L. Spinelli
  • M. Botwicz
  • N. Zolek
  • M. Kacprzak
  • D. Milej
  • P. Sawosz
  • A. Liebert
  • U. Weigel
  • T. Durduran
  • F. Foschum
  • A. Kienle
  • F. Baribeau
  • S. Leclair
  • J-P Bouchard
  • I. Noiseux
  • P. Gallant
  • O. Mermut
  • A. Farina
  • A. Pifferi
  • A. Torricelli
  • R. Cubeddu
  • H-C Ho
  • M. Mazurenka
  • H. Wabnitz
  • K. Klauenberg
  • O. Bodnar
  • C. Elster
  • M. Benazech-Lavoue
  • Y. Berube-Lauziere
  • F. Lesage
  • Dmitry Khoptyar
  • Stefan Andersson-Engels
  • P. Di Ninni
  • F. Martelli
  • G. Zaccanti
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2037-2053
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch