Abstract

We review here the pioneering research conducted by Paul Soleillet on the statistical properties of light in his doctoral thesis from 1929 [Ann. Phys. 10, 23 (1929)]. Soleillet’s wide-reaching work on polarization, coherence, fluorescence scattering, and three-dimensional fields has remained largely unrecognized; yet, his original contributions rival the modern rediscoveries in both generality and form. Only now, 89 years after Soleillet’s original publication and stimulated by our current research on fluorescence polarimetry, have we been able to fully understand and recognize the significance of his results.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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