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Slide 1

Polarization of Light: from Basics to Instruments (in less than 100 slides)

N. Manset

CFHT

Slide 2

Part I: Different polarization states of light

Part II: Stokes parameters, Mueller matrices

Part III: Optical components for polarimetry

Part IV: Polarimeters

Part V: ESPaDOnS

Slide 3

Light as an electromagnetic wave

Mathematical and graphical descriptions of polarization

Linear, circular, elliptical light

Polarized, unpolarized light

Slide 4

Light as an electromagnetic wave

Light is a transverse wave,

an electromagnetic wave

Part I: Polarization states

Slide 5

Mathematical description of the EM wave

Light wave that propagates in the z direction:

Part I: Polarization states

Slide 6

Graphical representation of the EM wave (I)

One can go from:

to the equation of an ellipse (using trigonometric identities, squaring, adding):

Part I: Polarization states

Slide 7

Graphical representation of the EM wave (II)

An ellipse can be represented by 4 quantities:

size of minor axis

size of major axis

orientation (angle)

sense (CW, CCW)

Light can be represented by 4 quantities .

Part I: Polarization states

Slide 8

Vertically polarized light

If there is no amplitude in x (E0x = 0), there is only one component, in y (vertical).

Part I: Polarization states, linear polarization

Slide 9

Polarization at 45º (I)

If there is no phase difference (=0) and

E0x = E0y, then Ex = Ey

Part I: Polarization states, linear polarization

Slide 10

Polarization at 45º (II)

Part I: Polarization states, linear polarization

Slide 11

Circular polarization (I)

If the phase difference is = 90º and E0x = E0y

then: Ex / E0x = cos , Ey / E0y = sin

and we get the equation of a circle:

- Introduction
- Different polarization states of light
- Stokes parameters and Mueller matrices
- Optical components for polarimetry
- Polarimeters

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