Massimo Santarsiero

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The Mueller-Stokes formalism that governs conventional polarization optics is formulated for plane waves, and thus the only qualification one could require of a 4 x 4 real matrix M in order that it qualify to be the Mueller matrix of some physical system would be that M map Omega((pol)), the positive solid light cone of Stokes vectors, into itself. In view(More)
The set of functions that appear in the correlation matrix of an electromagnetic source must satisfy the constraint of nonnegative definiteness. Here we derive a necessary and sufficient condition for nonnegativeness for the class of electromagnetic Schell-model sources. This result also suggests a possible synthesis procedure for this type of source. As an(More)
Thin annular sources, either coherent or completely incoherent from the spatial standpoint, have played a significant role in the synthesis of diffraction-free and J(0)-correlated fields, respectively. Here, we consider thin annular sources with partial correlation. A scalar description is developed under the assumption that the correlation function between(More)
We present a simple mathematical model giving a possible description of a partially coherent light beam exhibiting a flat-topped transverse intensity profile. Such a model allows us to deduce the modal distribution inside a multimode stable optical cavity, assuming that the modes are of the Hermite-Gauss type. The analytical expression used to represent(More)
The issue raised in this Letter is classical, not only in the sense of being nonquantum, but also in the sense of being quite ancient: which subset of 4x4 real matrices should be accepted as physical Mueller matrices in polarization optics? Nonquantum entanglement or inseparability between the polarization and spatial degrees of freedom of an(More)
A binary diffractive optical element, acting as a polarizing beam splitter, is proposed and analyzed. It behaves like a transmissive blazed grating, working on the first or the second diffraction order, depending on the polarization state of the incident radiation. The grating-phase profile required for both polarization states is obtained by means of(More)
Recent predictions concerning the relationship between the degree of polarization at a typical point of a Young interference pattern and the degree of coherence of the electromagnetic field at the pinholes are tested by a simple experiment. In particular, it is shown that light that is completely unpolarized at the pinholes can become partially polarized(More)
It is shown that any partially polarized, partially coherent source can be expressed in terms of a suitable superposition of transverse coherent modes with orthogonal polarization states. Such modes are determined through the solution of a system of two coupled integral equations. An example, for which the modal decomposition is obtained in closed form in(More)
Many partially coherent beams are made up of a superposition of mutually uncorrelated Hermite-Gaussian modes. We prove that knowledge of the transverse intensity profile of such a beam is sufficient for evaluating the weights of the modes in an exact way. Simulations indicate that the proposed method resists noise well.