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Proceedings Paper

Optical vortices, angular momentum, and Heisenberg's uncertainty relationship
Author(s): Miles J. Padgett
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Paper Abstract

Light beams with helical phasefronts are characterized by an azimuthal phase. The centre of these beams is often termed an optical vortex and the surrounding annulus of high intensity carries an orbital angular momentum with a ratio between angular momentum and energy corresponding to per photon. Such beams can induce rotation in microscopic objects and, when they are rotated, undergo a frequency shift. The light’s orbital angular momentum is a valid description and measurement on both a macroscopic scale and at the level of single photons. Most recently, orbital angular momentum has been shown to be subject to an uncertainty relationship between angular momentum and angular position.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 August 2004
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 5508, Complex Mediums V: Light and Complexity, (2 August 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.556817
Show Author Affiliations
Miles J. Padgett, Univ. of Glasgow (United Kingdom)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5508:
Complex Mediums V: Light and Complexity
Martin W. McCall; Graeme Dewar, Editor(s)

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