Optical EngineeringCascaded polarizing beamsplitter cubes in imaging systems
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Linear polarization rotation tilt is a form of polarization aberration present in polarizing beamsplitter cubes when they are used in imaging systems. It is caused by the rotation of the polarizing axis (defined by the plane of incidence at the beamsplitting interface) for off-axis angles of incidence. This aberration is inherent to the geometry of the cube and is unavoidable, causing beam-routing errors and undesirable losses. In systems that use two or more polarizing beamsplitter cubes in succession, the cubes can be oriented to either minimize or maximize the loss, where the maximum loss is five times the minimum loss. This polarization aberration is described and a way to minimize beam-routing errors associated with this aberration in a 4-F optical system is demonstrated.