Abstract

We address the detection of manufactured objects in different types of environments with active polarimetric imaging. Using an original, fully adaptive imager, we compare several imaging modes having different numbers of polarimetric degrees of freedom. We demonstrate the efficiency of active polarimetric imaging for decamouflage and hazardous object detection, and underline the characteristics that a polarimetric imager aimed at this type of application should possess. We show that in most encountered scenarios the Mueller matrices are nearly diagonal, and sufficient detection performance can be obtained with simple polarimetric imaging systems having reduced degrees of freedom. Moreover, intensity normalization of images is of paramount importance to better reveal polarimetric contrast.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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