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Opt Lett. 2010 Aug 1;35(15):2600-2. doi: 10.1364/OL.35.002600.

Comparison of maximal achievable contrast in scalar, Stokes, and Mueller images.

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  • 1Laboratoire Charles Fabry de l'Institut d'Optique, CNRS, Universit√© Paris-Sud, Campus Polytechnique, RD 128, 91127 Palaiseau, France.


We compare the performances of three different polarimetric imaging modalities, scalar, Stokes, and Mueller, in terms of achievable contrast for target detection applications. These modalities require, respectively, 1, 4, and 16 intensity measurements to form the polarimetric image. We show that the technique that leads to the best contrast is the scalar one, which requires only one optimized measurement.

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