Optical EngineeringDynamic acousto-optic photopolarimeter/spectrophotopolarimeter
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We propose a novel technique for a new division-of-amplitude photopolarimeter capable of complete measurement of the state of polarization of light, as determined by the four Stokes parameters. This photopolarimeter uses an acousto-optic cell in the Raman-Nath regime as a beam splitter to divide the incident beam into four or more components that are used to determine the four Stokes parameters of the incident beam. The acousto-optic photopolarimeter uses no movable parts and thus rapid and simultaneous measurements of the four Stokes parameters are obtained. The instrument matrix of this instrument is nonsingular, hence the state of polarization is completely determined. The acousto-optic photopolarimeter utilizes the useful dynamic grating property that functions as a temporary beam splitter. Power distribution and angle deviations can be easily controlled by varying the driving acoustooptic intensity and frequency. When properly enhanced, this dynamic property can be very useful for several in-line analysis applications.