Reference frame for the definition of the Stokes parameters describing the oscillation direction of the electric field within a beam of light. The propagation direction of the light beam is out of the paper, toward the reader. Positive and negative Stokes Q are oriented along the vertical (+Q) and horizontal (−Q) axes, respectively. Looking into the beam of light, positive Stokes U (+U) is oriented 45° counterclockwise from positive Stokes Q and positive Stokes V (+V) is defined as clockwise rotation. The angle of linear polarization AoLP and the rotation angle θ of an optical component used in the rotation Mueller matrix (see Eqs. (15) and (16)) are defined counterclockwise when looking into the beam of light.
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