A coherence-based description of the Lyot depolarizer illuminated by polychromatic light of any spectral density distribution is proposed as a generalization of the formulas provided for symmetrical spectra by Burns [J. Lightwave Technol. 1, 475 (1983)] and Mochizuki [Appl. Opt. 23, 3284 (1984)]. The structure of the derived expressions is explained in physical terms, and a numerical comparison with the previous solutions is performed. The results of the numerical analysis show that the proposed description, when applied to any configuration of a two-segment anisotropic depolarizer, is fully equivalent with the Mueller–Stokes calculus for broadband light. Following this consistency, the range of accuracy of the formula by Mochizuki has been verified.
© 2012 Optical Society of America
Coherence and Statistical Optics
Original Manuscript: September 27, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: November 30, 2011
Published: February 8, 2012
Piotr L. Makowski, Marek Z. Szymanski, and Andrzej W. Domanski, "Lyot depolarizer in terms of the theory of coherence—description for light of any spectrum," Appl. Opt. 51, 626-634 (2012)