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Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B


  • Editor: Henry M. Van Driel
  • Vol. 25, Iss. 4 — Apr. 1, 2008
  • pp: 680–682

Comment on elimination of polarization dependence from optical excitation functions

Jack W. Maseberg  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA B, Vol. 25, Issue 4, pp. 680-682 (2008)

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The measurement of optical excitation functions excited by electron impact is typically accomplished by recording atomic fluorescence emitted into a small solid angle perpendicular to the incident electron beam. This measured intensity is not proportional to the emission cross section because the fluorescence exhibits an angular distribution and polarization that varies with the energy of the exciting electrons. Typically, a polarizer is set at the “magic angle” ( 54.7 ° ) with respect to the electron beam axis to remove this polarization dependence. The literature for the derivation of the magic angle value assumes the polarizing element is perfect. An expression for the angle that accounts for the use of a partial polarizer is presented.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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

Original Manuscript: December 21, 2007
Revised Manuscript: February 5, 2008
Manuscript Accepted: February 6, 2008
Published: March 31, 2008

Jack W. Maseberg, "Comment on elimination of polarization dependence from optical excitation functions," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 25, 680-682 (2008)

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  7. L. J. Curtis, Atomic Structure and Lifetimes: a Conceptual Approach (Cambridge, 2003).
  8. R. M. A. Azzam and N. M. Bashara, Ellipsometry and Polarized Light (North Holland, 1989).

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