It has already been found that, in turbulent atmosphere, many partially coherent electromagnetic beams with uniform source polarization distributions can regain these distribution patterns in the far field. However, the far-zone polarization properties of beams with non-uniform source polarization distributions are not sufficiently studied and the condition for an electromagnetic beam to reconstruct its source polarization distribution in the far zone is not established. Using a type of electromagnetic anisotropic Gaussian Schell-model (GSM) beams which can have non-uniform polarization distributions on the source plane, we find that, under the influence of turbulent atmosphere, the transverse polarization distribution will finally become uniform starting with a non-uniform source polarization distribution, and the far-field degree of polarization is affected by the source intensity parameters, but not by the source spatial coherence parameters. We also find that, electromagnetic anisotropic GSM beams can regain their source polarization patterns in the far field when propagating through atmospheric turbulence if and only if, the two intensity distributions corresponding to the two orthogonal field components on the source plane are the same, or are different only for a constant parameter. The validity of this condition is unaffected by the intensity and spatial coherence profiles on the source plane.
©2012 Optical Society of America
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