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Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Vol. 22, Iss. 1 — Jan. 1, 2005
  • pp: 185–189

Angular dependence of the specular reflectance from an isotropic polydomain medium with large domains: surprising results regarding Brewster’s angle

Thomas G. Mayerhöfer and Janice L. Musfeldt  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 22, Issue 1, pp. 185-189 (2005)

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The angular dependence of the reflectance from an isotropic medium with large, randomly oriented, ordered domains is investigated and compared with that of an isotropic medium in which the optical properties can be characterized by a scalar dielectric function. Employing average reflectance and transmittance theory, we demonstrate that an isotropic medium consisting of optically large ordered domains exhibits only a parallel-polarized reflectance minimum, not the formal zero expected at Brewster’s angle. We attribute this result to the existence of nonzero cross-polarization terms despite the random orientation and the application of an incoherent averaging scheme, which is used to mimic traditional light sources.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(260.1180) Physical optics : Crystal optics
(260.5430) Physical optics : Polarization

Original Manuscript: May 5, 2004
Published: January 1, 2005

Thomas G. Mayerhöfer and Janice L. Musfeldt, "Angular dependence of the specular reflectance from an isotropic polydomain medium with large domains: surprising results regarding Brewster’s angle," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 22, 185-189 (2005)

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  22. As a consequence and on the basis of Eqs. (4), however, Rppmust be zero at αMin.
  23. Note that such contributions do not occur if a coherent averaging scheme is applied. An example of a coherent light source is a laser.

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