Depolarization

From Glossary of Meteorology
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depolarization

The process by which a polarized signal, for example, a radar signal, loses its original polarization as the result of scattering or of propagation through an anisotropic medium.

The signal may experience a change of polarization, for example, from circular to elliptical as a result of differential attenuation or differential phase shift, or it may experience a loss of polarization, that is, become unpolarized, as a result of scattering in a random medium.