Backscattering Mueller Matrix Analysis for Biomedical Optical Diagnostics

Andreas H. Hielscher, Angelia A. Eick, Judith R. Mourant, D. Chen, James P. Freyer, Irving J. Bigio

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


We report on the development of a method that records spatially dependent intensity patterns of polarized light that is diffusely backscattered from highly scattering media. It is demonstrated that these intensity patterns can be used to differentiate turbid media, such as polystyrene-sphere and biological-cell suspensions. Our technique employs polarized light from a He-Ne laser, which is focused onto the surface of the scattering medium. A surface area of approximately 4×4 cm centered on the light input point is imaged through polarization-analysis optics onto a CCD camera. One can observe a large variety of intensity patterns by varying the polarization state of the incident laser light and changing the analyzer configuration to detect different polarization components of the backscattered light. Introducing the Mueller-matrix concept for diffusely backscattered light, a framework is provided to select a subset of measurements that comprehensively describe the optical properties of backscattering media.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationBiomedical Optical Spectroscopy and Diagnostics, BOSD 1998
PublisherOptica Publishing Group (formerly OSA)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)1557525471
StatePublished - 1998
EventBiomedical Optical Spectroscopy and Diagnostics, BOSD 1998 - Orlando, United States
Duration: Mar 8 1998 → …

Publication series

NameOptics InfoBase Conference Papers
ISSN (Electronic)2162-2701


ConferenceBiomedical Optical Spectroscopy and Diagnostics, BOSD 1998
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Period3/8/98 → …


  • Backscattering
  • Cell analysis
  • Multiple scattering;
  • Polarization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Mechanics of Materials


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