Magneto-optic Effect

A magneto-optic effect is any one of a number of phenomena in which an electromagnetic wave propagates through a medium that has been altered by the presence of a quasistatic magnetic field. In such a material, which is also called gyrotropic or gyromagnetic, left- and right-rotating elliptical polarizations can propagate at different speeds, leading to a number of important phenomena. When light is transmitted through a layer of magneto-optic material, the result is called the Faraday effect: the plane of polarization can be rotated, forming a Faraday rotator. The results of reflection from a magneto-optic material are known as the magneto-optic Kerr effect (not to be confused with the nonlinear Kerr effect).

In general, magneto-optic effects break time reversal symmetry locally (i.e. when only the propagation of light, and not the source of the magnetic field, is considered) as well as Lorentz reciprocity, which is a necessary condition to construct devices such as optical isolators (through which light passes in one direction but not the other). (The other, less useful, way to break time reversal symmetry is to rely upon absorption loss.)

Two gyrotropic materials with reversed rotation directions of the two principal polarizations, corresponding to complex-conjugate ε tensors for lossless media, are called optical isomers.

Read more about Magneto-optic Effect:  Gyrotropic Permittivity, Wavelength Parallel Measurement of Magneto-optical Effect

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Magneto-optic Effect - Wavelength Parallel Measurement of Magneto-optical Effect
... It is well established that when this linear polarized light passes through another polarizer, also called analyzer, the transmitted light intensity could be varied depending on their relative angle θ governed by a cos^{2}θ law ... Based on this simple idea, now researcher has developed a fast spectroscopic MO system, they can get full spectral range MO activity in a single magnetic field scan ...

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