Anisotropic diffraction gratings based on a holographic polymer-dispersed liquid crystal (HPDLC) are realized by interferometric exposure using a spatial light modulator (SLM). The SLM is used in the HPDLC grating formation for anisotropic holographic recordings of two-dimensional polarization states for an incident light beam. The diffraction efficiency for P-polarization and the distinctive ratio of diffraction efficiency in P-polarization to that in S-polarization increases with the signal level applied to the SLM. The resulting volume gratings exhibit diffraction efficiency of more than 60% and a distinctive ratio of diffraction over 100. The microscopic origin of the anisotropic property is investigated by an optical polarizing microscope. The novel characteristics of the anisotropic diffraction properties of HPDLC are applied to an image reconstruction technique.
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