Astronomical Source Measurements

The first PEM application was measuring the polarization of light coming from the sun.  The work was done by Professor James Kemp in the 1970s and 1980s at the University of Oregon.  Since then, the PEM has been widely used for measurement of light coming from the sun and other stars.

In support of this work, Hinds Instruments has collaborated with scientists in the field to develop specialized PEMs for the extreme environments of remote telescope sites and space.  In many cases, researchers have built polarization measurement systems from these PEMs, incorporating them into complex optical systems such as Earth-based telescopes and satellites.

In addition, Hinds has designed complete polarization measurement systems for other astronomers.  In one project, Hinds researchers worked with the Space Telescope Science Institute to develop a polarimeter for analyzing very small circular polarizations in a background of large linear polarization.  This instrument was used to look for chiral signatures in astrobiological samples. To learn more about this project, request a copy of the SPIE polarimetry paper, Basic Optical Properties Of The Photoelastic Modulator Part II: Residual Birefringence in the Optical Element.



PEMs for extreme temperature environments
PEMs for space applications
Dual PEMs
Mueller Polarimeters
Stokes Polarimeters



JPL and Hinds Instruments: Celebrating Nearly Two Decades of Collaborative Design to Put PEMs in Space Under NASA Projects

Contact us to see how Hinds Instruments works with our customers to solve complex metrology problems.