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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 41, Iss. 13 — May. 1, 2002
  • pp: 2488–2493

Optimization of a dual-rotating-retarder Mueller matrix polarimeter

Matthew H. Smith  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 41, Issue 13, pp. 2488-2493 (2002)

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The dual-rotating-retarder configuration is one of the most common forms of the Mueller matrix polarimeter. I perform an optimization of this polarimeter configuration by minimizing the condition number of the system data reduction matrix. I find the optimum retardance for the rotating retarders to be 127°. If exactly 16 intensity measurements are used for a Mueller matrix calculation, a complex relationship exists between the condition number and the sizes of the angular increments of the two retarders. If many intensity measurements are made, thus overspecifying the calculation, I find broad optimal ranges of angular increments of the two retarders that yield essentially equal performance. Experimental results are given.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.5410) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Polarimetry
(230.5440) Optical devices : Polarization-selective devices

Original Manuscript: August 8, 2001
Revised Manuscript: January 2, 2002
Published: May 1, 2002

Matthew H. Smith, "Optimization of a dual-rotating-retarder Mueller matrix polarimeter," Appl. Opt. 41, 2488-2493 (2002)

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