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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 51, Iss. 6 — Feb. 20, 2012
  • pp: 735–744

Mueller matrix roots depolarization parameters

Hannah D. Noble, Stephen C. McClain, and Russell A. Chipman  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 51, Issue 6, pp. 735-744 (2012)

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The Mueller matrix roots decomposition recently proposed by Chipman in [1] and its three associated families of depolarization (amplitude depolarization, phase depolarization, and diagonal depolarization) are explored. Degree of polarization maps are used to differentiate among the three families and demonstrate the unity between phase and diagonal depolarization, while amplitude depolarization remains a distinct class. Three families of depolarization are generated via the averaging of different forms of two nondepolarizing Mueller matrices. The orientation of the resulting depolarization follows the cyclic permutations of the Pauli spin matrices. The depolarization forms of Mueller matrices from two scattering measurements are analyzed with the matrix roots decomposition—a sample of ground glass and a graphite and wood pencil tip.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.5410) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Polarimetry
(260.5430) Physical optics : Polarization
(290.5855) Scattering : Scattering, polarization
(240.2130) Optics at surfaces : Ellipsometry and polarimetry

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: August 1, 2011
Revised Manuscript: November 15, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: November 18, 2011
Published: February 16, 2012

Hannah D. Noble, Stephen C. McClain, and Russell A. Chipman, "Mueller matrix roots depolarization parameters," Appl. Opt. 51, 735-744 (2012)

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  1. R. A. Chipman, Handbook of Optics, Vol. 1 of Mueller Matrices, 3rd ed. (McGraw Hill, 2009).
  2. S.-Y. Lu and R. A. Chipman, “Interpretation of Mueller matrices based on polar decomposition,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 13, 1106–1113 (1996). [CrossRef]
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  8. H. Noble and R. Chipman, “The Mueller matrix roots algorithm and computational considerations,” Opt. Express20, 17–31 (2012).
  9. B. Deboo, J. Sasian, and R. Chipman, “Degree of polarization surfaces and maps for analysis of depolarization,” Opt. Express 12, 4941–4958 (2004). [CrossRef]
  10. J. J. Gil and E. Bernabeu, “A depolarization criterion in Mueller matrices,” Opt. Acta 32, 259–261 (1985). [CrossRef]
  11. J. J. Gil, “Characteristic properties of Mueller matrices,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 17, 328–334 (2000). [CrossRef]
  12. H. Noble, G. A. Smith, W. S. Lam, S. McClain, and S. McClain, “Polarization imaging light scattering facility,” in Polarization Science and Remote Sensing III, J. A. Shaw and J. S. Tyo, eds., Vol. 6682 (SPIE, 2007).
  13. B. J. DeBoo, J. M. Sasian, and R. A. Chipman, “Depolarization of diffusely reflecting man-made objects,” Appl. Opt. 44, 5434–5445 (2005). [CrossRef]

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