Several media outlets have echoed the publication of a new research article by the ALF – USAL Group in the prestigious Optica magazine. It demonstrates the production of a type of laser beam in the extreme ultraviolet with a special design in phase and polarization.
In this type of beam, the polarization distribution is linked to the phase structure. These light forms are called vector vortices, because the structure is analogous to that of a whirlpool with different directions of vibration. It is, therefore, a light beam that combines the properties of the orbital angular momentum of light associated with the optical vortices with those of the spin angular momentum of the light particles, which defines the polarization.
The authors explain that “the fundamental idea is to control the properties of ultraviolet light by acting on the initial infrared light, thanks to the fact that all the information is encoded in the physical laws of conservation.” In fact, in this study a new conserved quantity is also discovered in the harmonic generation process, the Pancharatnam topological charge, which includes in its definition both the spin and the orbital angular momentum of the light beam.
The study from which the results presented in the publication have been obtained is the result of the collaboration between the ALF – USAL Group with the Paris-Saclay University and the Colorado School of Mines and is part of the European project ERC ATTOSTRUCTURA (851201)
Article review published on the article can be consulted on our website.