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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1301;

Characterizing the Effects of Washing by Different Detergents on the Wavelength-Scale Microstructures of Silk Samples Using Mueller Matrix Polarimetry

Shenzhen Key Laboratory for Minimal Invasive Medical Technologies, Institute of Optical Imaging and Sensing, Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, Shenzhen 518055, China
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
Department of Physics, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: John G. Hardy and Chris Holland
Received: 27 June 2016 / Revised: 2 August 2016 / Accepted: 4 August 2016 / Published: 10 August 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Silk-Based Materials: From Production to Characterization)
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Silk fibers suffer from microstructural changes due to various external environmental conditions including daily washings. In this paper, we take the backscattering Mueller matrix images of silk samples for non-destructive and real-time quantitative characterization of the wavelength-scale microstructure and examination of the effects of washing by different detergents. The 2D images of the 16 Mueller matrix elements are reduced to the frequency distribution histograms (FDHs) whose central moments reveal the dominant structural features of the silk fibers. A group of new parameters are also proposed to characterize the wavelength-scale microstructural changes of the silk samples during the washing processes. Monte Carlo (MC) simulations are carried out to better understand how the Mueller matrix parameters are related to the wavelength-scale microstructure of silk fibers. The good agreement between experiments and simulations indicates that the Mueller matrix polarimetry and FDH based parameters can be used to quantitatively detect the wavelength-scale microstructural features of silk fibers. Mueller matrix polarimetry may be used as a powerful tool for non-destructive and in situ characterization of the wavelength-scale microstructures of silk based materials. View Full-Text
Keywords: silk; microstructure; polarization; Mueller matrix silk; microstructure; polarization; Mueller matrix

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Dong, Y.; He, H.; He, C.; Zhou, J.; Zeng, N.; Ma, H. Characterizing the Effects of Washing by Different Detergents on the Wavelength-Scale Microstructures of Silk Samples Using Mueller Matrix Polarimetry. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 1301.

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