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When the film thickness is considered as a parameter, a system composed of a transparent film on an absorbing substrate (in a transparent ambient) is characterized by a range of principal angle ø¯min ≤ ø¯ ≤ ø¯max over which the associated principal azimuth ψ¯ varies between 0° and 90° (i.e., 0° ≤ ψ¯ ≤ 90°) and the reflection phase difference Δ assumes either one of the two values: +π/2 or −π/2. We determine the principal angle ø¯(d) and principal azimuth ψ¯(d) as functions of film thickness d for the vacuum-SiO2-Si system at several wavelengths as a concrete example. When the film thickness exceeds a certain minimum value, more than one principal angle becomes possible, as can be predicted by a simple graphical construction. We apply the results to principal-angle ellipsometry. (PAE) of film-substrate systems; the relationship between ø¯ and ψ¯ during film growth is particularly interesting.

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Journal of the Optical Society of America (1917-1983)


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