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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 18, Iss. 22 — Oct. 25, 2010
  • pp: 23095–23103

Fast and optimal broad-band Stokes/Mueller polarimeter design by the use of a genetic algorithm

Paul Anton Letnes, Ingar Stian Nerbø, Lars Martin Sandvik Aas, Pål Gunnar Ellingsen, and Morten Kildemo  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 18, Issue 22, pp. 23095-23103 (2010)

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A fast multichannel Stokes/Mueller polarimeter with no mechanically moving parts has been designed to have close to optimal performance from 430 – 2000 nm by applying a genetic algorithm. Stokes (Mueller) polarimeters are characterized by their ability to analyze the full Stokes (Mueller) vector (matrix) of the incident light (sample). This ability is characterized by the condition number, κ, which directly influences the measurement noise in polarimetric measurements. Due to the spectral dependence of the retardance in birefringent materials, it is not trivial to design a polarimeter using dispersive components. We present here both a method to do this optimization using a genetic algorithm, as well as simulation results. Our results include fast, broad-band polarimeter designs for spectrographic use, based on 2 and 3 Ferroelectric Liquid Crystals, whose material properties are taken from measured values. The results promise to reduce the measurement noise significantly over previous designs, up to a factor of 4.5 for a Mueller polarimeter, in addition to extending the spectral range.

© 2010 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(120.2130) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Ellipsometry and polarimetry
(120.4570) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Optical design of instruments
(300.0300) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy

ToC Category:
Instrumentation, Measurement, and Metrology

Original Manuscript: September 9, 2010
Revised Manuscript: October 5, 2010
Manuscript Accepted: October 5, 2010
Published: October 18, 2010

Paul Anton Letnes, Ingar Stian Nerbø, Lars Martin S. Aas, Pål Gunnar Ellingsen, and Morten Kildemo, "Fast and optimal broad-band Stokes/Mueller polarimeter design by the use of a genetic algorithm," Opt. Express 18, 23095-23103 (2010)

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