We demonstrate and discuss the multitude of ways in which the extinct power of a scatterer can be measured. To tie some of the developed results to the classical statement of the optical theorem involving the imaginary part of the forward-scattering amplitude, particular attention is given to plane wave excitation. On the other hand, the general results apply to more general probing fields including near fields carrying evanescent components. Novel optical theorem detectors are derived that are based on the Kirchhoff–Helmholtz and Rayleigh–Sommerfeld-based formulations of diffraction, backpropagation, and boundary-value problems as well as on the canonical multipole expansion. The derived detectors also lead to novel expressions for the extinct power in terms of the incident and scattered fields. Applications of the derived results to scattering power sensing with near-field data are also discussed.
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7 October 2015: Corrections were made to Eqs. (39) and (40).
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