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Here we report the creation and observation of acoustic vortices of fractional order. Whilst integer orders are known to produce axisymmetric acoustic fields, fractional orders are shown to break this symmetry and produce a vast array of unexplored field patterns, typically exhibiting multiple closely spaced phase singularities. Here, fractional acoustic vortices are created by emitting ultrasonic waves from an annular array of sources using multiple ramps of phase delay around its circumference. Acoustic radiation force patterns, including multiple concentration points, short straight lines, triangles, squares and discontinuous circles are simulated and experimentally observed. The fractional acoustic vortex leading to two closely spaced phase singularities is used to trap, and by controlling the order, reversibly manipulate two microparticles to a proximity of 0.3 acoustic wavelengths.
Bibliographical noteDate of Acceptance: 02/04/2015
- acoustic vortices
- fractional topological charge
- trap patterns