Abstract

In active polarization imaging, one frequently needs to be insensitive to noninformative spatial intensity fluctuations. We investigate a way of solving this issue with general state contrast (GSC) imaging. It consists in acquiring two scalar polarimetric images with optimized illumination and analysis polarization states, then forming a ratio. We propose a method for maximizing the discrimination ability between a target and a background in GSC images by determining the optimal illumination and analysis states. A further advantage of this approach is to provide an objective way of quantifying the performance improvement obtained by increasing the number of degrees of freedom of a GSC imager. The efficiency of this approach is demonstrated on simulated and real-world images.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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