Abstract

Recent researches have revealed that there exists an intimate connection between radiometry and the theory of partial coherence. In this paper a review is presented of some of these developments. After a brief discussion of various models for energy transport in optical fields and of some of the basic concepts of the classical theory of optical coherence, the following topics are discussed: the foundations of radiometry, the coherence properties of Lambertian sources, and the relationship between the state of coherence of a source and the directionality of the light that the source generates. Some very recent work is also described which reveals that certain sources that are spatially highly incoherent in a global sense will generate light that is just as directional as a laser beam.

© 1978 Optical Society of America

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