Dark spots in a beam known as optical vortices can produce new and intriguing effects when used along with polarization control in a microscope. To highlight breakthroughs in this area, the editors of Optics Express, the Optical Society's (OSA) open-access journal, today published a special focus issue on Unconventional Polarization States of Light. The issue was organized and edited by Thomas G. Brown of the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester and Qiwen Zhan of the University of Dayton.
"What once was a side curiosity of optics is now joining the mainstream, both in fundamental investigations and in applications," said Brown. "Research in this focus issue will cover polarization breakthroughs that have the potential to affect a broad range of disciplines – from nanomaterials to laser devices."
The polarization of light can play an important role in optical trapping, interaction with nanostructures, and focusing in microscopy. The seminal work in the mid-1990s by Colin Sheppard, now at the National University of Singapore, and Dennis G. Hall now at Vanderbilt University launched a flurry of studies in the last decade on the creation and focusing of polarized beams that have certain geometrical symmetries. Beams with a spoke-like 'radial' polarization were of particular interest because of their potential for creating small focal regions of axially polarized light, a key requirement for interacting with nanostructures and coupling to fields tightly confined to metal surfaces. For unconventional polarization states of light, the geometrical arrangement of the polarization can produce vortex behavior in beam propagation, a result that has intrigued physicists and changed how optical engineers think about illumination in microscopes and lithography systems. Meanwhile, the creation of unconventional polarization states within compact laser cavities has offered new ways to begin incorporating these states into more complex optical systems.
Key Findings & Selected Papers
The following papers are some of the highlights of the Optics Express focus issue on Unconventional Polarization States of Light. All are included in volume 18, issue 10 and can be accessed online at http://www.OpticsInfoBase.org/OE.
"On the experimental investigation of the electric and magnetic response of a single nanostructure." Peter Banzer, Ulf Peschel, Susanne Quabis, and Gerd Leuchs, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light. pp. 10905-10923.
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?uri=oe-18-10-10905New research from the University of Dayton on the stable production of radial, azimuthal and other more complex vectorial beams from a fiber laser.
"Vectorial fiber laser using intracavity axial birefringence." Renjie Zhou, Joseph W. Haus, Peter E. Powers, and Qiwen Zhan, University of Dayton. pp. 10839-10847.
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?uri=oe-18-10-10839A new paper from the University of Rochester that provides an experimental and theoretical analysis of laser beams that contain every possible state of polarization within the cross section of the beam, and the propagation laws that govern those beams.
"Full Poincaré beams." Amber M. Beckley, Thomas G. Brown, and Miguel Alonso, University of Rochester. pp. 10777-10785.
About Optics Express
Optics Express reports on new developments in all fields of optical science and technology every two weeks. The journal provides rapid publication of original, peer-reviewed papers. It is published by the Optical Society and edited by C. Martijn de Sterke of the University of Sydney. Optics Express is an open-access journal and is available at no cost to readers online at http://www.OpticsInfoBase.org/OE.
Uniting more than 106,000 professionals from 134 countries, the Optical Society (OSA) brings together the global optics community through its programs and initiatives. Since 1916 OSA has worked to advance the common interests of the field, providing educational resources to the scientists, engineers and business leaders who work in the field by promoting the science of light and the advanced technologies made possible by optics and photonics. OSA publications, events, technical groups and programs foster optics knowledge and scientific collaboration among all those with an interest in optics and photonics. For more information, visit http://www.osa.org.
Angela Stark | EurekAlert!
X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under real ambient pressure conditions
28.06.2017 | National Institutes of Natural Sciences
New photoacoustic technique detects gases at parts-per-quadrillion level
28.06.2017 | Brown University
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...
19.06.2017 | Event News
13.06.2017 | Event News
13.06.2017 | Event News
28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
28.06.2017 | Health and Medicine