To show how apertures affect measurements of the circularly polarized components of light scattered to a detector, we develop two methods of averaging the <i>V</i> and <i>I</i> Stokes parameters over a circular aperture that collects light scattered from an optically active sphere. One method uses a two-dimensional numerical integration that is appropriate for small apertures, and the other gives analytical expressions for scattering into a solid angle of any size. We identify the aperture locations that, independent of aperture size, give an average <i>V</i> (and an effective degree of circular polarization) of zero for scattering from an optically inactive sphere and of nonzero for scattering from an optically active sphere.
© 1998 Optical Society of America
(010.1110) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Aerosols
(260.2110) Physical optics : Electromagnetic optics
(260.5430) Physical optics : Polarization
(290.0290) Scattering : Scattering
(290.4020) Scattering : Mie theory
J. David Pendleton and David L. Rosen, "Light Scattering from an Optically Active Sphere into a Circular Aperture," Appl. Opt. 37, 7897-7905 (1998)