Attenuation characterization of multiple combinations of imperfect polarizers

Chong Huang, Shuang Zhao, Haiqing Chen, Zhaoshu Liao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Malus's law, when used to calculate the attenuation ratio of the combination of two imperfect polarizers (two-CIP), will introduce an error, especially near the crossed-axis orientation. In this paper, first, the Jones matrix of the imperfect polarizer is deduced and an exact algorithm of the attenuation ratio of the two-CIP is proposed as well as its monotonic attenuation interval. Experimental results confirm that our deduced expression is more accurate than Malus's law. Then based on this algorithm, an attenuation-ratio expression of the combination of three imperfect polarizers (three-CIP) is presented. In this three-CIP model, it is found that when the electric field amplitude ratio of the imperfect polarizer is e, the attenuation ratio can change from 1 to ∈4 monotonically in a general model when P1 and P3 are rotated and P2 is fixed, which is proved by experiment. Finally, it is deduced that the combination of n imperfect polarizers (n-CIP) can obtain a minimum attenuation ratio of ∈2(n-1), which indicates the number of imperfect polarizers needed to achieve the required attenuation ratio.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1060-1068
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Optical Society of America A: Optics and Image Science, and Vision
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition


Dive into the research topics of 'Attenuation characterization of multiple combinations of imperfect polarizers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this