Polarisation structuring of broadband light

Mitchell, K. J., Radwell, N., Franke-Arnold, S. , Padgett, M. J. and Phillips, D. B. (2017) Polarisation structuring of broadband light. Optics Express, 25(21), pp. 25079-25089. (doi: 10.1364/OE.25.025079)

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Spatial structuring of the intensity, phase and polarisation of light is useful in a wide variety of modern applications, from microscopy to optical communications. This shaping is most commonly achieved using liquid crystal spatial light modulators (LC-SLMs). However, the inherent chromatic dispersion of LC-SLMs when used as diffractive elements presents a challenge to the extension of such techniques from monochromatic to broadband light. In this work we demonstrate a method of generating broadband vector beams with dynamically tunable intensity, phase and polarisation over a bandwidth of 100 nm. We use our system to generate radially and azimuthally polarised vector vortex beams carrying orbital angular momentum, and beams whose polarisation states span the majority of the Poincaré sphere. We characterise these broadband vector beams using spatially and spectrally resolved Stokes measurements, and detail the technical and fundamental limitations of our technique, including beam generation fidelity and efficiency. The broadband vector beam shaper that we demonstrate here may find use in applications such as ultrafast beam shaping and white light microscopy.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Padgett, Professor Miles and Radwell, Dr Neal and Franke-Arnold, Professor Sonja and Phillips, Dr David and Mitchell, Mr Kevin
Authors: Mitchell, K. J., Radwell, N., Franke-Arnold, S., Padgett, M. J., and Phillips, D. B.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Optics Express
Publisher:Optical Society of America
ISSN (Online):1094-4087
Published Online:02 October 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 OSA
First Published:First published in Optics Express 25(21): 25079-25089
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
Data DOI:10.5525/gla.researchdata.459

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
624501TWISTS - Twists & more: the complex shape of lightMiles PadgettEuropean Research Council (ERC)340507S&E P&A - PHYSICS & ASTRONOMY
726501Field testing a miniaturised MEMS gravimeterGiles HammondEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/M01326X1S&E P&A - PHYSICS & ASTRONOMY
637131Quantum memory and processing of orbital angular momentum information in atomic gassesSonja Franke-ArnoldLeverhulme Trust (LEVERHUL)RPG-2013-386S&E P&A - PHYSICS & ASTRONOMY