Linear Stokes measurement of thermal targets using compact LWIR spectropolarimeter

Kira A. Hart, Meredith Kupinski, Dong Wu, Russell A. Chipman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Scopus citations


The trade-off between spectral resolution and instrument throughput is analyzed for a compact, uncooled, longwave infrared (LWIR) channeled spectropolarimeter (IRCSP). The IRCSP was developed as a part of the Submm Wave and InfraRed Polarimeters (SWIRP) project out of NASA's Goddard Spaceflight Center. The IRCSP scientific objective targets measurements of AOLP and DOLP with 1-μm spectral resolution from 8.5 - 12.5 μm in a single snapshot. The geometry of the field stop determines the field of view (FOV) of the IRCSP. This work relates the spectral resolution, instrument throughput, and polarimetric accuracy of a spectro-polarimeter to the FOV. The accuracy of linear Stokes retrievals for low temperature thermal targets are predicted for varying FOV and measurement noise conditions. This work presents a method to quantify the achievable accuracy in AOLP and DOLP as a function of field stop dimensions and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). While smaller field stops are shown to improve accuracy as the spectral resolution is increased, low SNR is the dominant source of error for the IRCSP prototype. For the IRCSP, a SNR of at least 80 is required to produce DOLP measurements with < 5% error for targets with DOLP < 0:2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPolarization
Subtitle of host publicationMeasurement, Analysis, and Remote Sensing XIV
EditorsDavid B. Chenault, Dennis H. Goldstein
ISBN (Electronic)9781510636019
StatePublished - 2020
EventPolarization: Measurement, Analysis, and Remote Sensing XIV 2020 - None, United States
Duration: Apr 27 2020May 8 2020

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


ConferencePolarization: Measurement, Analysis, and Remote Sensing XIV 2020
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • LWIR
  • Polarimetry
  • Polarization
  • Remote sensing
  • Spectro-polarimeter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Linear Stokes measurement of thermal targets using compact LWIR spectropolarimeter'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this