Simplified spectropolarimetry using reactive mesogen polarization gratings

Michael J. Escuti, Chulwoo Oh, Carlos Sánchez, Cees Bastiaansen, Dirk J. Broer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

92 Citations (Scopus)


The measurement of complete polarimetric parameters for a broad spectrum of wavelengths is challenging because of the multi-dimensional nature of the data arid the need to chromatically separate the light under test. As a result, current methods for spectropolarimetry and imaging polarimetry are limited because they tend to be complex and/or relatively slow. Here we experimentally demonstrate an approach to measure all four Stokes parameters using three polarization gratings arid four simultaneous intensity measurements, with potential to dramatically impact the varied fields of air/space-borne remote sensing, target detection, biomedical imaging/diagnosis, and telecommunications. We have developed reactive mesogen polarization gratings using simple spin-casting and holography techniques, and used them to implement a potentially revolutionary detector capable of simultaneous measurement of full polarization information at many wavelengths with no moving or tunable elements. This polarimeter design not only enables measurements over a likely bandwidth of up to 70% of the center wavelength, it is also capable of measurements at relatively high speed (MHz or more) limited only by the choice of photo-detectors and processing power of the system. The polarization gratings themselves manifest nearly ideal behavior, including diffraction efficiencies of greater than 99%, strong polarization sensitivity of the first diffraction orders, very low incoherent scattering, and suitability for visible and infrared light. Due to its simple and compact design, simultaneous measurement process, and potential for preserving image registration, this spectropolarimeter should prove an attractive alternative to current polarization detection arid imaging systems.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationImaging Spectrometry XI
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)0819463817, 9780819463814
Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2006
EventImaging Spectrometry XI - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: 14 Aug 200616 Aug 2006

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X


ConferenceImaging Spectrometry XI
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • Hyperspectral
  • Liquid crystals
  • Multispectral
  • Polarimetry
  • Polarization grating
  • Reactive mesogens
  • Spectropolarimetry


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