- Linear polarization
electrodynamics, linear polarization or plane polarization of electromagnetic radiationis a confinement of the electric fieldvector or magnetic fieldvector to a given plane along the direction of propagation. See polarizationfor more information.
Historically, the orientation of a polarized electromagnetic wave has been defined in the optical regime by the orientation of the electric vector, and in the
radioregime, by the orientation of the magnetic vector.
Mathematical description of linear polarization
for the magnetic field, where k is the
angular frequencyof the wave, and is the speed of light.
amplitudeof the field and
Jones vectorin the x-y plane.
The wave is linearly polarized when the phase angles are equal,
This represents a wave polarized at an angle with respect to the x axis. In that case the Jones vector can be written
The state vectors for linear polarization in x or y are special cases of this state vector.
If unit vectors are defined such that
then the polarization state can written in the "x-y basis" as
*cite book |author=Jackson, John D.|title=Classical Electrodynamics (3rd ed.)|publisher=Wiley|year=1998|id=ISBN 0-471-30932-X
Polarization of classical electromagnetic waves
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