Swings and roundabouts: optical Poincaré spheres for polarization and Gaussian beams

Mark R Dennis, MA Alonso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

16 Citations (Scopus)
140 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The connection between Poincaré spheres for polarization and Gaussian beams is explored, focusing on the interpretation of elliptic polarization in terms of the isotropic two-dimensional harmonic oscillator in Hamiltonian mechanics, its canonical quantization and semiclassical interpretation. This leads to the interpretation of structured Gaussian modes, the Hermite-Gaussian, Laguerre-Gaussian and generalized Hermite-Laguerre-Gaussian modes as eigenfunctions of operators corresponding to the classical constants of motion of the two-dimensional oscillator, which acquire an extra significance as families of classical ellipses upon semiclassical quantization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20150441
Number of pages16
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Volume375
Issue number2087
Early online date9 Jan 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2017

Structured keywords

  • SPOCK

Keywords

  • Harmonic oscillator
  • Hermite-Gaussian
  • Laguerre-Gaussian

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