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Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B


  • Vol. 17, Iss. 12 — Dec. 1, 2000
  • pp: 1973–1979

Birefringence measurements by means of light deflection at domain walls in ferroelastic crystals

P. Kolata, L. Guilbert, M. D. Fontana, J. P. Salvestrini, and Z. Czapla  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA B, Vol. 17, Issue 12, pp. 1973-1979 (2000)

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The deflection of light in ferroelastic crystals results from refraction and reflection at domain walls. When the tilt angle of the principal axes in neighboring domains is small, simple relationships between the crystal birefringences and the angles of the deflected beams can be deduced from Snell’s law of refraction. As a rule, this condition is satisfied at W-domain walls in ferroelastic species that have a biaxial prototype phase. In this case, measurement of the deflection angles permits one to determine the birefringences easily. This method has as its main advantages independence of the sample thickness and the need for only rough sample preparation. It is absolutely insensitive to temperature fluctuations. We have applied the method to crystals of rubidium hydrogen selenate and dihydrated barium chloride as illustrative examples.

© 2000 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(160.2260) Materials : Ferroelectrics
(160.4670) Materials : Optical materials
(160.4760) Materials : Optical properties
(260.1440) Physical optics : Birefringence

P. Kolata, L. Guilbert, M. D. Fontana, J. P. Salvestrini, and Z. Czapla, "Birefringence measurements by means of light deflection at domain walls in ferroelastic crystals," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 17, 1973-1979 (2000)

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  1. T. Tsukamoto, J. Hatano, and H. Futuma, in “Proceedings of the 2nd Japanese–Soviet Symposium on Ferroelectricity, Kyoto 1980,” J. Phys. Soc. Jpn. 49, Suppl. B 155–157 (1980).
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  9. L. Guilbert, J. P. Salvestrini, P. Kolata, F. X. Abrial, M. D. Fontana, and Z. Czapla, “Optical characteristics of triclinic rubidium hydrogen selenate,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 15, 1009–1016 (1998). [CrossRef]
  10. J. Bornarel, P. Staniorowski, and Z. Czapla, “Light deflection and birefringence in APFA ferroelastic crystals,” J. Phys.: Condens. Matter 12, 653–667 (2000).

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