Abstract

We report a study and comparison of continuous-wave, optical polarization difference imaging (PDI) and polarization modulation imaging (PMI) for imaging through scattering media. The problem is cast in the framework of a theoretical estimation, and the comparison is based on three visualization parameters, namely, the magnitude, the degree, and the orientation of the polarization. We show that PDI is superior in estimating the first two parameters in active imaging under specific conditions, while the PMI is suitable for passive imaging and is the only way to estimate polarization orientation. We also propose new schemes for rendering polarization information as a color image and for applying the newly introduced polarization-orientation imaging for segmentation. Simulation and experimental results verify the theoretical conclusions.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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