Infrared spectropolarimetry

Dennis H. Goldstein, Russell A. Chipman, David B. Chenault

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


This paper treats the fundamentals of infrared spectropolarimetry as a step in understanding electro-optical materials and designing better spatial light modulators. It describes the issues in converting a Fourier transform spectrometer to perform spectropolarimetric measurements and includes mathematics to interpret the resulting spectropolarimetric data. Two differences exist between this proposed instrumentation and previous infrared crystal optics studies: (1) this instrument acquires data simultaneously at all wavelengths within its spectral range and (2) it measures Mueller polarization matrices. Conventional measurements with laser polarimeters take birefringence data with applied fields at a few laser wavelengths. With the spectropolarimeter, data are obtained over the entire spectrum, including on and near absorption bands where the most interesting phenomena occur. Measuring Mueller matrices as a function of wavelength provides data on polarization and scattering, effects that will ultimately limit the performance of a modulating crystal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)120-125
Number of pages6
JournalOptical Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • General Engineering


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