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Local polarization of tightly focused unpolarized light
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2007 (English)In: Nature Photonics, ISSN 1749-4885, Vol. 1, no 4, 228-231 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The polarization of light is important in a great variety of optical phenomena, ranging from transmission, reflection and scattering to polarimetric imaging of scenes and quantum-mechanical selection rules of atomic and molecular transitions. Among some less-well-known phenomena that illustrate the vectorial nature of light are the Pancharatnam(1) (or geometric(2)) phase, singularities in the polarization pattern of clear sky(3) and polarization of microwave background radiation(4). Here, we examine the partial polarization of focused light. We experimentally demonstrate a rather surprising phenomenon, where the focusing of unpolarized light results in rings of full polarization in the focal plane of the focusing optics. The polarization rings are imaged with a resolution of < 100 nm by probing the focal region using a gold nanoparticle.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 1, no 4, 228-231 p.
Keyword [en]
single molecules, field, microscopy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-16613DOI: 10.1038/nphoton.2007.30ISI: 000246367300013Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-34249903621OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-16613DiVA: diva2:334655
Note
QC 20100525Available from: 2010-08-05 Created: 2010-08-05Bibliographically approved

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