Abstract

Performing reliable measurements in optical metrology, such as those needed in ellipsometry, requires a calibrated source and detector, or a well-characterized reference sample. We present a novel interferometric technique to perform reliable ellipsometric measurements. This technique relies on the use of a nonclassical optical source, namely, polarization-entangled twin photons generated by spontaneous parametric downconversion from a nonlinear crystal, in conjunction with a coincidence-detection scheme. Ellipsometric measurements acquired with this scheme are absolute, i.e., they require neither source nor detector calibration, nor do they require a reference.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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