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Waveplates



Waveplates (retarders) are made from birefringent materials which introduce a phase difference between the fast and slow principal axis of the waveplate. The optical axis of waveplate is parallel to the face. Light incident normal to the surface will be split to components polarized parallel and perpendicular to the optical axis with different refractive index and velocity in this device. The difference in velocities gives rise to a phase shift which is called retardance. At any specific wavelength the phase retardance is governed by the thickness of Waveplates. The standard waveplates we provided include half waveplates and quarter waveplates, other custom waveplates can also be provided upon request.
 
Material Crystal Quartz
Dimension Tolerance +0.0/-0.2mm
Wavefront Distortion λ/8@632.8nm
Retardation Tolerance λ/100
Parallelism(single plate) <1 arc second
Surface Quality 20/10 scratch and dig
Clear Aperture >90% central area
AR Coating R<0.25%@central wavelength
Damage Threshold >5J/cm2, 20ns, 20Hz @1064nm
 
 
Half Waveplate
When applying a linearly polarized beam to a half waveplate, it emerges as a linearly polarized beam but its polarization plane is rotated with respect to the polarization plane of the input beam. The rotation of the polarization plane is such that the angle between the input polarization and the output polarization is twice the angle between the input polarization and the waveplate's axis. When applying a circularly polarized beam, a clockwise circular polarization will transform into a counter-clockwise circular polarization and vice versa. Half waveplates are often used as continuously adjustable polarization rotators and as a variable ratio beamsplitter when used in conjunction with a polarization beamsplitter cube.
 
 
 
 
Quarter Waveplate
When applying a linearly polarized beam with the polarization plane aligned at 45deg to the waveplate's principal plane, the output beam will be circularly polarized. Similarly when applying a circularly polarized beam to a λ/4 waveplate the output beam will be linearly polarized. When a quarter waveplate is double passed, i.e. by mirror reflection, it acts as a half waveplate and rotates the plane of polarization to a certain angle. Quarter waveplates are widely used in creating circular polarization from linear or linear polarization from circular, ellipsometry, optical pumping, suppressing unwanted reflection, optical isolation and etc.
 
 
Types of Waveplate
 
Type Feature
Zero Order Cemented
  • Cemented by glue
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Wide Wavelength Bandwidth
  • Moderate damage threshold
Optical Contacted
  • No glue
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Wide Wavelength Bandwidth
  • Better damage threshold
  • Good wavefront and parallelism
Air Spaced
  • No glue, Mounted
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Wide Wavelength Bandwidth
  • High damage threshold
  • Good wavefront
True Zero Order Cemented
  • Cemented by glue
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Wide Wavelength Bandwidth
  • Moderate damage threshold
  • Good wavefront and parallelism
Telecom Waveplate
  • Single plate
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Wide Wavelength Bandwidth
  • High damage threshold
  • Good wavefront and parallelism
  • Only 1310nm, 1550nm available
Multi Order
  • Low Temperature Bandwidth
  • Low Wavelength Bandwidth
  • High damage threshold
  • Good wavefront and parallelism
  • Low cost
Dual Wavelength
  • Provide Specific Retardance At Two Different Wavelengths
Achromatic
  • Better Temperature Bandwidth
  • Very broad Wavelength Bandwidth
  • Cemented and air spaced available
Wedge Waveplate
  • Eliminate Etalon effect
  • Eliminate Return Beam

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