Physics

Difference Between Polarizer and Analyzer

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Main Difference

The main difference between Polarizer and Analyzer is that Polarizer forms plane-polarized light, whereas the Analyzer could be used to examine whether the light has been separated or not.

Polarizer vs. Analyzer

A polarizer is considered as a device that is used to convert light into polarized light; on the flip side, the analyzer is considered as a device that is used to scan either the light becomes differentiated or not. The formation of a light beam into a plane-polarized light beam occurs in polarizer; on the other hand, the analyzer could also perform as polarization device that polarized beam of light, and one of its main applications is that to examine the polarized light whether it diverges or not.

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A polarizer is usually situated just beneath the specimen of the microscope; on the contrary, the analyzer is normally positioned above the microscope specimen. Polarizer could be moved and revolved into 3600; on the flip side, the analyzer could only travel in or out of the track of the light.

A polarizer is mainly used to diverge the light which is coming from the light source; on the contrary, the analyzer is mainly used to check whether the specimen birefringent or the light has been completely polarized or not. Polarizer could filter waves of lights to produce polarization of light; on the other hand, the analyzer acts as a polarizer, but it performs as a checker to check that whether the light has been polarized from the polarizer.

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Polarizer only permits that part of the light to polarized, which will be perpendicular to the plane of the specimen from which polarizer is attached; on the contrary, analyzer only permits that component of light, which is normally parallel to plane of the specimen from which analyzer is attached.

Comparison Chart

PolarizerAnalyzer
Any device which is typically used to convert white light into plane-polarized light is known as a polarizer.A part of an optical instrument that is used to regulate whether the light is plane-polarized or not is an analyzer.
Polarization
The formation of a light beam into a plane-polarized light beam occurs.A polarized beam of light and one of its main applications is to examine the polarized light, whether it diverges or not.
Placement in Polarizing Microscope
It is usually situated just beneath the specimen of the microscope.It is normally positioned above the microscope specimen.
Movement
Could be moved and revolved into 3600Could only travel in or out of the track of the light
Uses
Mainly used to diverge the light which is coming from the light sourceMainly used to check whether the specimen birefringent or the light has been completely polarized or not
Function
Could filter waves of lights to produce polarization of lightAct as a polarizer, but it performs as a checker to check that the whether the light has been polarized from the polarizer
Permits
Only permits that part of the light to polarized which will be perpendicular to the plane of the specimen from which polarizer is attachedOnly permits that component of light which is normally parallel to plane of the specimen from which analyzer is attached
Position
Positioned in the vertical illuminatorPositioned above the half mirror

What is Polarizer?

The first part of an optical instrument that is used to polarize the light waves coming from the source is the polarizer. Polarizers are considered as the filters for optical instruments on which light transfer strongly depends on the way of polarization. Through such devices, the linear polarized light is usually formed.

The light waves produced from other directions rather than selected direction are absorbed or sent towards a different direction to remove the interference caused by them. Though, the polarizers are not able to convert or change light into the desired direction that usually comes from any direction.

Polarizers are only able to remove the unwanted light waves. There are many present types of polarizers, such as crystalline polarizers, circular polarizers, and linear polarizers.

Commonly polarizer sheets are used for the applications of low power. The sheet polarizers are usually made from polymer materials that have been stressed only in one direction. In this sheet polarizers, the light waves of unwanted directions are readily or strongly absorbed by polymers.

Many higher optical powers of light waves can be handled by polarizing them into beam splitters. In these beam splitters, the light waves coming from unwanted directions, other than being absorbed, are sent to another direction rather than the desired one.

Its another type is wire grid polarizers. The wire grid polarizers are made from very narrow fabricating metal strips on a glass substrate.

What is Analyzer?

The second part of the optical instrument, which is used to determine whether the coming light is plane-polarized or not. The analyzer act as a second polarizer because it is one of its main applications is to examine the polarized light, whether it diverges or not.

The analyzer is located in the optical passageway between the specimen and the observation tubes in microscopy. The analyzer is formed of a polarizing plate, and the height of the polarizing plate from the specimen normally can be adjusted.

In microscopy, the analyzer can be removed or changed at will. A normal image of light waves is observed when only the polarizer is used. But the extinction of light can be observed when the analyzer is used along with the polarizer in optical instruments.

If we observe the birefringent sample, this will produce two separate light waves that consist of perpendicular polarizations. After this, the light waves are then passed through the analyzer, where these both separate light waves are recombined and resulting in the appearance of a false-color, which is known as interference color.

Moreover, if the evolving light waves which are coming from the analyzer are not changed or transformed when the analyzer is rotated, then this means the light is not completely polarized. The light is considered as polarized light if emergent light is varied from zero to maximum ranges when the analyzer is rotated.

Key Differences

  1. A polarizer is a device that converts light waves into polarized light, whereas analyzer is a device that is used to determine whether the light has been polarized or not.
  2. A polarizer can make a light beam a plane-polarized beam of light; on the other hand, the ability of analyzer is to act as a polarization device and to check for polarized light.
  3. The location of the polarizer is that it is present beneath the specimen; on the contrary, the analyzer is present above the specimen.
  4. A polarizer can be rotated in 3600 while the analyzer can be interchanged between the path of the light.
  5. The basic use of polarizer is that it is used to polarize coming light from a source of light; on the flip side, the analyzer is used for determining the birefringent of the specimen.
  6. The polarizer is usually situated in the perpendicular illuminator; on the contrary, the analyzer is situated directly above the half mirror.

Conclusion

The above discussion concludes that both polarizer and analyzer act as polarizing devices, but there are differences between them, such as polarizer forms plane-polarized light while the analyzer is used to check whether the has been polarized or not.

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Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss