Eur. Phys. J. Appl. Phys.
Volume 40, Number 1, October 2007
|Page(s)||1 - 47|
|Published online||03 November 2007|
Polarimetric characterization of light and media
Physical quantities involved in polarimetric phenomena
Universidad de Zaragoza, ICE c/ Pedro Cerbuna 12, 50009 Zaragoza, Spain
Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Revised: 16 July 2007
Accepted: 26 July 2007
Published online: 3 November 2007
An objective analysis is carried out of the matricial models representing the polarimetric properties of light and material media leading to the identification and definition of their corresponding physical quantities, using the concept of the coherency matrix. For light, cases of homogeneous and inhomogeneous wavefront are analyzed, and a model for 3D polarimetric purity is constructed. For linear passive material media, a general model is developed on the basis that any physically realizable linear transformation of Stokes vectors is equivalent to an ensemble average of passive, deterministic nondepolarizing transformations. Through this framework, the relevant physical quantities, including indices of polarimetric purity, are identified and decoupled. Some decompositions of the whole system into a set of well-defined components are considered, as well as techniques for isolating the unknown components by means of new procedures for subtracting coherency matrices. These results and methods constitute a powerful tool for analyzing and exploiting experimental and industrial polarimetry. Some particular application examples are indicated.
PACS: 42.25.Ja – Polarization / 42.68.Mj – Scattering, polarization
© EDP Sciences, 2007
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