Abstract

Based on dual transverse Pockels effect, complete polarization conversion can be achieved by using only one electro-optic crystal and its two externally applied voltages. The electro-optic phase retardation and the azimuth angle of the field-induced principal dielectric axes of the crystal can be independently and linearly controlled by the amplitude and direction of the applied electric field, and the formulas for this correlation are deduced for arbitrary input and output polarization states. The candidate crystals mainly include the uniaxial crystals of 3m, 6¯2m, and 32 symmetry groups, and the cubic crystals of 4¯3m and 23 symmetry groups. Theoretical analysis demonstrates that one crystal exhibiting both dual transverse Pockels effect and optical activity can also be used for complete polarization converter. The continuous polarization rotation of a linearly polarized light from 0° to 180° has been performed experimentally by use of single lithium niobate crystal with four lateral electrodes. In addition the light beam position- dependent polarization conversion by using a bulk electro-optic crystal is also measured in the ex periment. This new type of polarization converter will have potential applications in many fields due to its simple configuration, explicit control logic of polarization conversion, and lower power consumption.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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