Questions tagged [birefringence]

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Why do we need cross-polarised light for observing conoscopic interference patterns?

I've performed some experiments for projecting conoscopic interference patterns. In some set-ups are used two circular polarizers one before and one after the birefringent crystal. I can imagine that ...
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Optical axis of crystals

Can the optical axis of a double refracting crystal change?If yes,then what processes could be responsible for bringing about such a change?
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Vacuum birefringence

Many of the papers (e.g., this) dealing with nonlinear electrodynamics treat a theory's prediction of vacuum birefringence as undesirable, but don't explain why it would be undesirable. For example: ...
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Does the polarized light lose intensity when it crosses a birefractive crystal?

If a beam of light coming from a natural source passes through a polarizer and then through a birefringent crystal, does the intensity with which it left the polarizer change?
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Torque on Quarter-Wave Plate

When circularly polarized light is passed through a quarter-wave plate, the plate experiences a torque. I understand this is true because angular momentum must be conserved, but I don't understand ...
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What sort of polarizer is this?

I wanted to try to experiment with polarizers, trying the 3 polarizers 45 degrees from each other, and similar experiments. I ordered 10 sheets of the cheapest polarizing foil I could find on ...
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What does the refractive index for e.g. alpha mean?

When I look for some materials like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barium_sulfate and want to extract the refractive index then there is written: (nD)=1.636 (alpha). And sometimes also for beta and ...
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Birefringent properties in Mylar films

Does Mylar film has birefringence properties? I am unsure about this and would like to know the reason behind its properties.
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Why are birefringence materials so rare?

By symmetry, most crystals will show birefringence. But the effect is very minute. So the question is actually, why is the birefrigence effect in most low-symmetry materials so small?
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Birefringent filter, optical path length difference?

In 'The Light Fantastic' by Kenyon, I.R. (p424), it is said that for a birefringent material inclined at Brewster's angle and who's optical axis lies in the plane of the plate, we have an optical path ...
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599 views

What happens if polarized light passes through calcite or some other birefringent material?

every explanation of birefringence I find talks about unpolarized light entering Calcite, but what if I use a polarized light? Will that mean that as I rotate the crystal the light will disappear then ...
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760 views

Application of Snell's law for an extraordinary wave?

I have read [1] that when the light enters a birefringent material with optical axis perpendicular to the plane of incidence that the angle of refraction of the extraordinary wave can be found by ...
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optical homogeneity of organic thin films

Prior to further analysis (like variable angle ellipsometric spectroscopy) I check thin films of organic materials vacuum deposited on glass substrates for their optical homogeneity under lineraly ...
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Why don't extraordinary rays follow Snell's law?

I understand that ordinary ray (O-ray) and extra-ordinary ray (e-ray) have different refractive indices. This should mean O-ray and e-ray move with different velocities in a substance and they should ...