Abstract

The polarization properties of far-field thermal radiation emitted by hot bodies at uniform temperature is explored. Some novel results are obtained for the Stokes parameters for emission from large, smooth, opaque bodies of convex shape and also for small particles in the Rayleigh region. For the case of large, smooth, opaque bodies, the results may be readily extended to include nonuniform temperature distributions that vary slowly on the scale of a wavelength. The formulas obtained are particularly simple and straightforward to apply, and examples of their application to emission from a large smooth cylinder and from a small ellipsoidal particle are described.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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