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Differential matrices for depolarizing media



Thomas A. Germer


The evolution of a Stokes vector through depolarizing media is considered. A general form for the differential matrix is derived that is appropriate in the presence of depolarization, and is parameterized in a manner that ensures that it yields, upon integration, a valid Mueller matrix for any choice of parameters with some limited constraints. The form expands the more limited form for a non-depolarizing matrix given by Azzam [J. Opt. Soc. Am. 68, 1756-1767 (1978)] and which was extended recently by others to include depolarization. A decomposition for a Mueller matrix is proposed, based upon the parameters for the differential matrix, which when integrated over unit length, would yield the same Mueller matrix.
Optics Letters


depolarization, Mueller matrix, polarization


Germer, T. (2012), Differential matrices for depolarizing media, Optics Letters, [online], (Accessed July 14, 2024)


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Created March 1, 2012, Updated February 19, 2017