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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Michael Duncan
  • Vol. 14, Iss. 7 — Apr. 3, 2006
  • pp: 3039–3044

Topology of optical vortex lines formed by the interference of three, four, and five plane waves

Kevin O’Holleran, Miles J. Padgett, and Mark R. Dennis  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 7, pp. 3039-3044 (2006)

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When three or more plane waves overlap in space, complete destructive interference occurs on nodal lines, also called phase singularities or optical vortices. For super positions of three plane waves, the vortices are straight, parallel lines. For four plane waves the vortices form an array of closed or open loops. For five or more plane waves the loops are irregular. We illustrate these patterns numerically and experimentally and explain the three-, four- and five-wave topologies with a phasor argument.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(230.6120) Optical devices : Spatial light modulators
(260.2110) Physical optics : Electromagnetic optics

ToC Category:
Physical Optics

Original Manuscript: February 27, 2006
Revised Manuscript: March 27, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: March 28, 2006
Published: April 3, 2006

Kevin O'Holleran, Miles J. Padgett, and Mark R. Dennis, "Topology of optical vortex lines formed by the interference of three, four, and five plane waves," Opt. Express 14, 3039-3044 (2006)

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