In the course of circuits and electronics, I remember there is an experiment to show the polarization of the wave as lissajous figures. I am wondering for polarized laser, is there any way to visualize the polarization in the similar way? I try to use a light splitter to split the (circular) polarized light into two perpendicular beams and used photo detector to receive the beam and send them into oscilloscope in X and Y channel. But the scope doesn't really show the 'lissajous' figure. So I am wondering if this is the right way to visualize the polarized light? Thanks
Circularly polarized light should create a circle on the oscilloscope, which is a type of Lissajous curve. Any polarization of light produces a Lissajous curve with the restriction that the two frequencies of the x and y parameters are the same. So the only possibilities are a circular, elliptical, and linear polarization.
If your oscilloscope doesn't show a circle for circularly polarized light, something has gone wrong in the experiment.
Edit: this does assume your laser is a simple harmonic wave, so that the electric field varies sinusoidally and we therefore have in-phase x and y components. Also, see polarization.