Abstract

A new microscope is described that is capable of measuring the polarization characteristics of materials in normal-incidence reflection with a demonstrated lateral resolution of 4  μm. The instrument measures eight parameters of the sample Mueller matrix, which can be related to the diattenuation, retardation, circular diattenuation, direction of the principal axis, and the polarization factor. With proper calibration, the eight elements of the sample Mueller matrix can be determined to better than 0.001–0.002 for small values. Examples are given for aluminum, rutile (TiO2), and calcite (CaCO3).

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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