CMB polarization data plots, almost a vector field, then what?

1. Mar 17, 2014

Spinnor

The data points of the polarization of the CMB are a magnitude and an orientation that varies between 0° and 180°. What kind of mathematical field is that, not quite a vector field?

Thanks for any help!

2. Mar 18, 2014

Chalnoth

This is how polarization on the sky is often defined mathematically:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stokes_parameters

3. Mar 18, 2014

bcrowell

Staff Emeritus
And what are the red and blue colors in the plots?

4. Mar 18, 2014

Spinnor

Temperature fluctuations?