In this paper we present a model of interference microscope image formation, which allows for analysis on unified basis
of imaging different types of samples with different interference microscope modalities. The applicability of the
proposed model to analysis of the coherence effects, arising in confocal and full-field interference microscopes, when
imaging in depth of a layered sample, is shown. The effect of sample transversal structure on the coherence signal is also
analyzed, showing that in this case the interference microscope can not be characterized by a single effective aperture
and both illuminating and imaging apertures are important.© (2012) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.