Abstract

Polarimetric imaging is often performed using light with a narrow spectrum for the sake of polarization measurement accuracy. However, due to the use of narrowband filters, this reduces the amount of light entering the system and thus the signal-to-noise ratio. This may not be the best choice for target detection applications, where a high target contrast is required rather than polarimetric accuracy. We address contrast optimization for broadband passive polarimetric imaging. We show through simulation and experiments that polarimetric contrast can be significantly increased by broadening the spectrum of analyzed light. In addition, we show that the contrast can be optimized by taking into account the spectral dependence of the scene and of the polarization analysis devices.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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