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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: James C. Wyant
  • Vol. 45, Iss. 22 — Aug. 1, 2006
  • pp: 5470–5478

Dual-field imaging polarimeter using liquid crystal variable retarders

Nathan J. Pust and Joseph A. Shaw  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 45, Issue 22, pp. 5470-5478 (2006)

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An imaging Stokes-vector polarimeter using liquid crystal variable retarders (LCVRs) has been built and calibrated. Operating in five bands from 450 to 700   nm , the polarimeter can be changed quickly between narrow (12°) and wide ( 160 ° ) fields of view. The instrument is designed for studying the effects of differing sky polarization upon the measured polarization of ground-based objects. LCVRs exhibit variations in retardance with ray incidence angle and ray position in the aperture. Therefore LCVR-based Stokes polarimeters exhibit unique calibration challenges not found in other systems. Careful design and calibration of the instrument has achieved errors within ± 1.5 % . Clear-sky measurements agree well with previously published data and cloudy data provide opportunities to explore spatial and spectral variations in sky polarization.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.5410) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Polarimetry
(260.5430) Physical optics : Polarization
(280.0280) Remote sensing and sensors : Remote sensing and sensors
(290.1310) Scattering : Atmospheric scattering

ToC Category:
Imaging Polarimeters

Original Manuscript: November 14, 2005
Manuscript Accepted: January 9, 2006

Nathan J. Pust and Joseph A. Shaw, "Dual-field imaging polarimeter using liquid crystal variable retarders," Appl. Opt. 45, 5470-5478 (2006)

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