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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 41, Iss. 1 — Jan. 1, 2002
  • pp: 38–45

Differential interference contrast microscopy as a polarimetric instrument

Andrew Resnick  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 41, Issue 1, pp. 38-45 (2002)

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Differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy is shown to be equivalent to an incomplete Stokes polarimeter capable of probing optical properties of materials on microscopic-length scales. The Mueller matrix for a DIC microscope is calculated for various types of samples, and the polarimetric properties for DIC component parts of a spaceflight microscope are spectrally measured. As a practical application, a measurement of the index mismatch between colloidal particles and a nearly index-matched fluid bath was performed.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.2130) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Ellipsometry and polarimetry
(120.5410) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Polarimetry
(180.0180) Microscopy : Microscopy
(230.5440) Optical devices : Polarization-selective devices

Original Manuscript: June 25, 2001
Revised Manuscript: September 6, 2001
Published: January 1, 2002

Andrew Resnick, "Differential interference contrast microscopy as a polarimetric instrument," Appl. Opt. 41, 38-45 (2002)

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  1. S. Inoue, K. R. Spring, Video Microscopy: The Fundamentals (Plenum, New York, 1997). [CrossRef]
  2. M. Pluta, Specialized Methods, Vol. 2 of Advanced Light Microscopy (Elsevier, New York, 1989), Chap. 7, pp. 146–196.
  3. S. Inoué, “Ultrathin optical sectioning and dynamic volume investigation with conventional light microscopy,” in Three-Dimensional Confocal Microscopy: Volume Investigation of Biological SpecimensJ. K. Stevens, L. R. Mills, J. E. Trogades, eds. (Academic, London, 1994), Chap. 17, pp. 397–419. [CrossRef]
  4. The experiments are Physics of Colloids in Space 2 (PCS-II), Physics of Hard Spheres Experiment 2 (PHASE-II), and Low Volume Fraction Entropically Driven Colloidal Assembly (LϕCA).
  5. Z. G. Yu, X. Song, D. Chandler, “Polarizability fluctuations in dielectric materials with quenched disorder,” Phys. Rev. E 62, 4698–4701 (2000). [CrossRef]
  6. B. van Tiggelen, H. Stark, “Nematic liquid crystals as a new challenge for radiative transfer,” Rev. Mod. Phys. 72, 1017–1039 (2000). [CrossRef]
  7. See, for example, B. Berne, R. Pecora, Dynamic Light Scattering (Krieger, Malabar, Fla., 1990).
  8. See, for example, B. Dahneke, Measurement of Suspended Particles by Quasi-Elastic Light Scattering (Wiley, New York, 1983).
  9. See, for example, J. D. Joannopoulos, R. D. Meade, J. N. Winn, Photonic Crystals: Molding the Flow of Light (Princeton U. Press, Princeton, N.J., 1995).
  10. P. Török, P. D. Higdon, T. Wilson, “On the general properties of polarised light conventional and confocal microscopes,” Opt. Commun. 148, 300–315 (1998). [CrossRef]
  11. R. Chipman, Polarimetry Handbook of Optics, M. Bass, ed. (McGraw-Hill, N.Y., 1995), Vol. 2, Chap. 22.
  12. See, for example, R. M. A. Azzam, N. M. Bashara, Ellipsometry and Polarized Light (Elsevier Science, Amsterdam, 1996).
  13. D. B. Chenault, “Infrared spectropolarimetry,” Ph.D. dissertation (University of Alabama, Huntsville, Ala., 1992).

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