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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 20, Iss. 3 — Jan. 30, 2012
  • pp: 2110–2115

Refractive elements for the measurement of the orbital angular momentum of a single photon

Martin P. J. Lavery, David J. Robertson, Gregorius C. G. Berkhout, Gordon D. Love, Miles J. Padgett, and Johannes Courtial  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 20, Issue 3, pp. 2110-2115 (2012)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.20.002110


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Abstract

We have developed a mode transformer comprising two custom refractive optical elements which convert orbital angular momentum states into transverse momentum states. This transformation allows for an efficient measurement of the orbital angular momentum content of an input light beam. We characterise the channel capacity of the system for 50 input modes, giving a maximum value of 3.46 bits per photon. Using an electron multiplying CCD (EMCCD) camera with a laser source attenuated such that on average there is less than one photon present within the system per measurement period, we demonstrate that the elements are efficient for the use in single photon experiments.

© 2012 OSA

OCIS Codes
(060.4510) Fiber optics and optical communications : Optical communications
(080.3630) Geometric optics : Lenses
(050.4865) Diffraction and gratings : Optical vortices
(060.5565) Fiber optics and optical communications : Quantum communications

History
Original Manuscript: September 1, 2011
Revised Manuscript: November 10, 2011
Manuscript Accepted: December 2, 2011
Published: January 17, 2012

Citation
Martin P. J. Lavery, David J. Robertson, Gregorius C. G. Berkhout, Gordon D. Love, Miles J. Padgett, and Johannes Courtial, "Refractive elements for the measurement of the orbital angular momentum of a single photon," Opt. Express 20, 2110-2115 (2012)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-20-3-2110


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