"Orbital angular momentum in optical fibers," by Robert Niederriter (University of Colorado, Boulder)

Friday, March 4, 2016 - 2:15pm to 3:15pm
AMO Seminars

AMO Seminar

Physics & Astronomy Building (PAB) Room 4-330
Friday, March 4, 2016

Guest Speaker: Robert Niederriter (University of Colorado, Boulder)

Talk Title: "Orbital angular momentum in optical fibers"


The ability of light to carry orbital angular momentum (OAM) has been established for more than 20 years. Generation of high-purity OAM, however, still typically requires expensive precision optics, and most techniques to measure OAM use similarly complex devices. My first contact with OAM came when I inadvertently generated twisting beams in multimode optical fiber. That happy accident led us toward developing improved OAM generation and detection techniques and a particularly sensitive type of fiber optic sensor. Since then, I have been carefully crafting beams with tunable OAM using optical fibers.

We have developed a simple technique for generating OAM based on mode combination in few-mode polarization-maintaining (PM) optical fiber. The OAM can be tuned between +1 and -1. A similar system shows promise for high sensitivity fiber optic temperature sensors, in which the OAM generated depends strongly on the temperature of the fiber. I will describe our work generating OAM in a simple PM fiber and show how this concept can be applied to highly sensitive fiber optic sensors. 

PAB 4-330