Date of this Version
Patent Number: 5,956,145
Disclosed is a System and method for controlling polarization State determining parameters of a polarized beam of light in an ellipSometer or polarimeter and the like System, (e.g. a modulation element ellipsometer System), So that they are in ranges wherein the Sensitivity, (of a Sample system characterizing PSI and DELTA value monitoring detector used to measure changes in Said polarization State resulting from interaction with a “composite Sample System,” comprised of a Sample System per Se.. and a beam polarization State determining variable retarder, to noise and measurement errors etc. therein), is reduced. The present invention allows determining Sample System per Se.. characterizing PSI and DELTA values, from Composite Sample System characterizing PSI and DELTA values, by compensating for the presence of present invention components, (VR1) and/or VR2), added to an ellipsometer or polarimeter and the like System. The present invention also improves the ability of an ellipSometer or polarimeter and the like System fitted with present invention components (VR1) and/or (VR2) to provide uSably accurate and precise Sample System characterizing PSI and DELTA determining data values, wherein a Sample System per Se.. investigating polarized beam of light is oriented at other than a Principal or Brewster Angle of Incidence thereto, the use of which Angle of Incidence would otherwise be difficult, if not impossible. Practice of the present invention also allows determination of the “Handedness” of a polarized beam of light, and of sample system Jones or Mueller Matrix component values. As well, the present invention provides means for making System components (VR1) and/or (VR2) added to an ellipsometer or components (VR1) and/or (VR2) added to an ellipsometer or parent when desired, without removal thereof from said ellipsometer or polarimeter System.