Superweak momentum transfer near optical vortices

Stephen M. Barnett*, M. V. Berry

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Near a vortex in a monochromatic light beam, the length of the local wavevector (phase gradient) can exceed the wavenumber in any of the plane waves in the superposition representing the beam. One way to detect these 'superweak' momenta could be by 'superkicks' imparted to a small particle located near the vortex, by absorbing individual large-momentum photons from the beam. A model for this process is a two-level atom with a transition resonant with the light beam. A semiclassical analysis shows that the momentum distribution of the atom is shifted by interaction with the vortex beam, by amounts that can almost reach the target superkicks and are usually greater than the momenta in the plane waves comprising the beam.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125701
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Optics
Volume15
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013

Keywords

  • weak measurement
  • quantum optics
  • singularities
  • semiclassical
  • EXCHANGED MOMENTUM
  • SURFACE-WAVE
  • SINGULARITIES
  • PARTICLE

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