Optimal configurations of full-Stokes polarimeter with immunity to both Poisson and Gaussian noise

Tingkui Mu, Zeyu Chen, Chunmin Zhang, Rongguang Liang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


For a full-Stokes polarimeter (FSP), generally there are two types of noise, signal-dependent Poisson shot noise and signal-independent additive Gaussian noise, which will degrade the signal-to-noise ratio on the measured Stokes parameters. The relation between the immunity to Gaussian noise and the condition of the measurement matrix has been widely studied in the recent literature. In this paper, we present a new merit function and use it to achieve optimal configurations with immunity to both types of noise. The numerical results show that, for the FSP consisting of variable retarders followed by a fixed polarizer, the four measurement channels immune to these two types of noise can be optimally composed by a 102.2° retardance with a pair of azimuths ±71.9° and a 142.1° retardance with a pair of azimuths ±34.95°, or by two quarter-wave plates with four pairs of azimuths (±70.15°, ±87.84°) and (±42.82°, ±19.14°). The tolerances of the retardances or azimuths in the optimized configurations are evaluated for practical manufacturing, assembling and alignment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number055702
JournalJournal of Optics (United Kingdom)
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2016


  • polarimetric imaging
  • polarimetry
  • polarization-selective devices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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