Homework Help: Compute the polarization state

1. Apr 22, 2010

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
compute the polarization state for the following scenarios:
The input light is randomly propagated in the z direction (figure attached) and then passes through a linear polarizer oriented 45° from either the x or y axis.

1-After the linear polarizer, the light passes through a beam splitter, and quarter wave plate with the fast axis aligned with the x axis, and is reflected back by a mirror (M) (See attached figure).
The output is in the –x direction as depicted in the figure.

2-Similar to (1), but the beam splitter is now replaced with a polarization beam splitter.

Please on my proposed solution can you help me to see what is wrong and help me especially with the angles of polarization?
thank you
2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution
polarization state in term of angle:
1- the light is polarized at 45 degrees > after the beam splitter, the intensity is divided by 2 but the angle of polarization stays the same > after the quarter wave plate, the linear light become a polarized circular light (clockwise or counterclockwise??) > After the mirror the circular light is reversed > when the circular light pass through the quarter wave plane, it becomes linear again but with what angle? > light comes out

For question 2- I dont see how it will change from the previous question. Also, i dont understand the use of a polarized beam splitter on polarized light?
1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

Thank you

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• polarization_1.jpg
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Last edited: Apr 22, 2010