OSA's Digital Library

Journal of the Optical Society of America A

Journal of the Optical Society of America A


  • Editor: Franco Gori
  • Vol. 29, Iss. 4 — Apr. 1, 2012
  • pp: 521–524

Mechanism and symmetry properties of depolarization in weak scattering of light

Yingjun He, Yu Xin, Dengping Wu, Liqiang Deng, and Yanru Chen  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA A, Vol. 29, Issue 4, pp. 521-524 (2012)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (238 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



The mechanism and some symmetry properties of depolarization upon weak scattering of light from a class of random media were studied theoretically. Departing from the angular distribution of the degree of polarization, our derivations showed the mechanism that induces the change of polarization can be split into two parts of different nature. One is the vectorial effect that redistributes the original light components, and the other is the interaction effect of the medium that modulates the correlation properties of the incident field. We also showed that there is dependence of the angular distribution on the incident polarization state; i.e., the angular pattern and its symmetry depend on both the orientation and ellipticity of the incident polarization. Random light was analyzed in the space–frequency domain.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(260.5430) Physical optics : Polarization
(290.0290) Scattering : Scattering
(290.5855) Scattering : Scattering, polarization

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: December 20, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: January 19, 2012
Published: March 20, 2012

Yingjun He, Yu Xin, Dengping Wu, Liqiang Deng, and Yanru Chen, "Mechanism and symmetry properties of depolarization in weak scattering of light," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 29, 521-524 (2012)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. D. F. V. James, “Change of polarization of light beams on propagation in free space,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 11, 1641–1643 (1994). [CrossRef]
  2. M. Salem, O. Korotkova, and E. Wolf, “Can two planar sources with the same sets of Stokes parameters generate beams with different degrees of polarization?” Opt. Lett. 31, 3025–3027 (2006). [CrossRef]
  3. M. Salem and E. Wolf, “Coherence-induced polarization changes in light beams,” Opt. Lett. 33, 1180–1182 (2008). [CrossRef]
  4. Y. Xin, Y. Chen, Q. Zhao, and M. Zhou, “Effect of cross-polarization of electromagnetic source on the degree of polarization of generated beam,” Opt. Commun. 281, 1954–1957 (2008). [CrossRef]
  5. F. C. MacKintosh, J. X. Zhu, D. J. Pine, and D. A. Weitz, “Polarization memory of multiply scattered light,” Phys. Rev. B 40, 9342–9345 (1989). [CrossRef]
  6. M. Xu and R. R. Alfano, “Circular polarization memory of light,” Phys. Rev. E 72, 065601 (2005). [CrossRef]
  7. L. Tsang, J. A. Kong, and K.-H. Ding, Scattering of Electromagnetic Waves, Theories and Applications, 1st ed. (Wiley Interscience, 2000).
  8. M. Born and E. Wolf, Principles of Optics, 7th ed. (Cambridge University, 1999).
  9. Y. Xin, Y. Chen, Q. Zhao, and M. Zhou, “Beam radiated from quasi-homogeneous uniformly polarized electromagnetic source scattering on quasi-homogeneous media,” Opt. Commun. 278, 247–252 (2007). [CrossRef]
  10. T. Wang and D. Zhao, “Scattering theory of stochastic electromagnetic light waves,” Opt. Lett. 35, 2412–2414 (2010). [CrossRef]
  11. Z. Tong and O. Korotkova, “Theory of weak scattering of stochastic electromagnetic fields from deterministic and random media,” Phys. Rev. A 82, 033836 (2010). [CrossRef]
  12. T. Wang and D. Zhao, “Polarization-induced coherence changes of an electromagnetic light wave on scattering,” Opt. Lett. 35, 3108–3110 (2010). [CrossRef]
  13. L. Mandel and E. Wolf, Optical Coherence and Quantum Optics (Cambridge University, 1995).
  14. T. Setälä, A. Shevchenko, M. Kaivola, and A. T. Friberg, “Degree of polarization for optical near fields,” Phys. Rev. E 66, 016615 (2002). [CrossRef]
  15. Alfredo and L., “Degree of polarization for three-dimensional fields as a distance between correlation matrices,” Opt. Commun. 253, 10–14 (2005). [CrossRef]
  16. J. Ellis, A. Dogariu, S. Ponomarenko, and E. Wolf, “Degree of polarization of statistically stationary electromagnetic fields,” Opt. Commun. 248, 333–337 (2005). [CrossRef]
  17. T. Setälä, K. Lindfors, M. Kaivola, J. Tervo, and A. T. Friberg, “Intensity fluctuations and degree of polarization in three-dimensional thermal light fields,” Opt. Lett. 29, 2587–2589 (2004). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.


Fig. 1. Fig. 2.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited