In polarimetric imaging systems, the main source of perturbations may not be detection noise but fluctuations of the Mueller matrices in the scene. In this case, we propose a method for determining the illumination and analysis polarization states that allow reaching the highest target detection performance. We show with simulations and real-world images that, in practical applications, the statistics of Mueller matrix fluctuations have to be taken into account to optimize polarimetric imagery.
© 2011 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: September 9, 2011
Revised Manuscript: October 20, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: October 23, 2011
Published: November 28, 2011
Guillaume Anna, François Goudail, and Daniel Dolfi, "Polarimetric target detection in the presence of spatially fluctuating Mueller matrices," Opt. Lett. 36, 4590-4592 (2011)