We consider stationary electromagnetic fields modeled as superpositions of unpolarized and angularly uncorrelated plane waves and show that in an isotropic case the electric cross-spectral tensor is proportional to the imaginary part of the Green tensor. This is as for blackbody radiation, but here the field need not be in thermal equilibrium. We also evaluate the degree of polarization for a homogeneous but nonisotropic field for which the plane waves propagate within a cone of angles. The results are compared with the known polarization properties of blackbody radiation.
© 2003 Optical Society of America
Tero Setälä, Matti Kaivola, and Ari T. Friberg, "Spatial correlations and degree of polarization in homogeneous electromagnetic fields," Opt. Lett. 28, 1069-1071 (2003)