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If vertically polarized light hits a linear polarizer aligned at a 45 degree angle from the polarization of the light, my understanding is 50% of the light will pass through and have its polarization changed and 50% will be blocked/reflected.

For the 50% of light that is reflected off the polarizer (does not pass through), does its polarization remain vertical or does it change?

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A polarizer that transmits one polarization component "perfectly" will also reflect (or absorb) the orthogonal polarization perfectly. That is, the transmitted light will have one polarization (e.g., vertical) and the reflected or absorbed light will have the opposite polarization (e.g., horizontal). See, for example, wire grid polarizers at [https://www.thorlabs.com].

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  • $\begingroup$ If the polarizer is rotated 45 degrees relative to the light hitting it. What happens to the light that goes through and what happens to the light that gets reflected (in terms of its angle of polarization)? $\endgroup$ Jan 15, 2019 at 4:44
  • $\begingroup$ The angle of polarization relative to the polarizer, both for transmitted and reflected light, is unchanged if the polarizer is rotated. So, the polarization rotates with the polarizer. $\endgroup$
    – S. McGrew
    Jan 15, 2019 at 13:41

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