Abstract
The concept of degree of polarization surfaces is introduced as an aid to classifying the depolarization properties of Mueller matrices. Degree of polarization surfaces provide a visualization of the dependence of depolarization on incident polarization state. The surfaces result from a nonuniform contraction of the Poincaré sphere corresponding to the depolarization properties encoded in a Mueller matrix. For a given Mueller matrix, the degree of polarization surface is defined by moving each point on the unit Poincaré sphere radially inward until its distance from the origin equals the output state degree of polarization for the corresponding input state. Of the sixteen elements in a Mueller matrix, twelve contribute to the shape of the degree of polarization surface, yielding a complex family of surfaces. The surface shapes associated with the numerator and denominator of the degree of polarization function are analyzed separately. Protrusion of the numerator surface through the denominator surface at any point indicates nonphysical Mueller matrices. Degree of polarization maps are plots of the degree of polarization on flat projections of the sphere. These maps reveal depolarization patterns in a manner well suited for quantifying the degree of polarization variations, making degree of polarization surfaces and maps valuable tools for categorizing and classifying the depolarization properties of Mueller matrices.
Original language  English (US) 

Pages (fromto)  49414958 
Number of pages  18 
Journal  Optics Express 
Volume  12 
Issue number  20 
DOIs  
State  Published  Oct 2004 
ASJC Scopus subject areas
 Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
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Degree of polarization surfaces and maps for analysis of depolarization
DeBoo, B. (Contributor), Sasian, J. M. (Contributor) & Chipman, R. A. (Contributor), figshare, 2004
DOI: 10.6084/m9.figshare.c.3759065.v1, https://figshare.com/collections/Degree_of_polarization_surfaces_and_maps_for_analysis_of_depolarization/3759065/1
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Degree of polarization surfaces and maps for analysis of depolarization
DeBoo, B. (Contributor), Sasian, J. M. (Contributor) & Chipman, R. A. (Contributor), figshare, 2004
DOI: 10.6084/m9.figshare.c.3759065, https://figshare.com/collections/Degree_of_polarization_surfaces_and_maps_for_analysis_of_depolarization/3759065
Dataset