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Polarization Overview - Part 2: Waveplates & Retarders (Advanced)

Waveplates and retarders are optical components designed to transmit light while modifying its polarization state without attenuating, deviating, or displacing the beam. Waveplates and retarders are used to alter the polarization state of light in order to maximize the performance of optical systems. Join Katie Walker, Product Line Engineer, as she reviews the science behind how waveplates and retarders work in the advanced portion of our two-part polarization overview. Learn more about waveplates and retarders by reading our Understanding Waveplates article. For more information on polarization, please view Part 1 of our Polarization Overview series.

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New to linear polarization? Review polarization terms, basic relations, polarization states, and polarizer types.

Need to alter or select a specific light polarization state? Check out our selection of dichroic, crystalline, or wire grid polarizers to get started.

Available with λ/4 and λ/2 retardance in crystalline or polymer materials, including multiple order, zero order, or achromatic versions.

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