Polarization contrast

    Polarization contrast is used mainly for the study of anisotropic objects, having birefringence or double reflection. These are minerals, crystals, slags, certain plant and animal cells and tissues, artificial and natural fibers.

    Polarization is a method of observation of specimens in polarized light, i.e. light formed by two beams polarized in mutually perpendicular planes. To this end, the usual construction of the microscope is supplemented with two special polarization filters – a polarizer and an analyzer.

    These filters successively placed into the beam path and rotated relative to each other by 90 degrees do not transmit light. The first filter (the polarizer) changes the plane of polarization of light so that the light it has passed cannot pass through the second filter (the analyzer).

    When operating in the transmitted light, the polarizer is installed in the condenser and the analyzer is placed after the objective. In the reflected light, the analyzer remains in its place and the polarizer is installed before the dichroic mirror right after the aperture diaphragm of the reflected light illuminator. In both cases, the specimen is illuminated by plane-polarized light. If the illuminated specimen turns the direction of the polarized light oscillation from the plane given by polarizer, we are beginning to see the light partially passed by the analyzer.

    The use of polarization makes it possible to reduce the glare of the surfaces with high reflectivity, to get a saturated image of high quality, and what is the most important, to carry out petrographic study and measurement of the polarization angles to determine the structure of the specimen.


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