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Homework Help: Optics: plane of vibration, state of polarization

  1. Apr 16, 2010 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    I'm using Eugene Hecht's 4th edition of Optics, doing problems from chapter 8 on polarization.

    Write an expression for a polarization-state lightwave of angular frequency (omega) and amplitude E propagating along the x-axis with its plane of vibration at an angle of 25 degrees to the xy-plane. The disturbance is zero at t = 0 and x = 0.

    2. Relevant equations
    Not completely sure

    3. The attempt at a solution

    Okay, so looking through the book I am really confused as to how to find the plane of vibration angle. There was another problem that dealt with finding the angle given the Ex and Ey components. I think that if I can understand the plane of vibration thing more thoroughly then I would have a better chance at understanding this problem. Also, it seems like the definition of polarization state is excluded from the chapter entirely. Like... augh I wish the chapters had a summary so I wouldn't have to ravage the entire book looking for a definition. Augh it's not in the index either.

    Okay so just going off of what I think I know: So it's propagating in the x direction, that means that it's oscillating in the y and z directions right? The plane of vibration thing is an effect of the waves being out of phase by some constant epsilon. I need to find what epsilon has to be in order for the polarization thing to be 25 degrees. Furthermore, I have to find a phase constant such that both the Ey and Ez components are zero at t=0 and x=0. How do I go about finding an epsilon so that the polarization is 25 degrees? Augh..

    Examples, general advice, any help of any kind is greatly appreciated. Thanksthanks!!
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 16, 2010 #2
    Okay, how come the search stinks so much? Like I put in what I want and I never get results that are closely related to what I searched, I'm guessing because the keywords I'm using are being searched for independently of one another, so if I say "polarization states" then anything with the word polarization or states comes up, and not both. Am I being stupid here? I believe I have tried searching "polarization+states" and having similar results. The reason I'm getting annoyed is because the "similar threads" box at the bottom of this page consistently has threads that are way more related to what I was originally searching for but were completely not in the search I did before. Gosh I mean there's a thread called plane of polarization!!! How come my search didn't pick that guy up FIRST!? Augh. Yeah so any advice to make my searches actually useful would be greatly appreciated as well.
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