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Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics


  • Editor: Gregory W. Faris
  • Vol. 1, Iss. 6 — Jun. 13, 2006

Modal liquid crystal devices in optical tweezing: 3D control and oscillating potential wells

Philip J.W. Hands, Svetlana A. Tatarkova, Andrew K. Kirby, and Gordon D. Love  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 14, Issue 10, pp. 4525-4537 (2006)

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We investigate the use of liquid crystal (LC) adaptive optics elements to provide full 3 dimensional particle control in an optical tweezer. These devices are suitable for single controllable traps, and so are less versatile than many of the competing technologies which can be used to control multiple particles. However, they have the advantages of simplicity and light efficiency. Furthermore, compared to binary holographic optical traps they have increased positional accuracy. The transmissive LC devices could be retro-fitted to an existing microscope system. An adaptive modal LC lens is used to vary the z-focal position over a range of up to 100 µm and an adaptive LC beam-steering device is used to deflect the beam (and trapped particle) in the x-y plane within an available radius of 10 µm. Furthermore, by modifying the polarisation of the incident light, these LC components also offer the opportunity for the creation of dual optical traps of controllable depth and separation.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(140.7010) Lasers and laser optics : Laser trapping
(230.3720) Optical devices : Liquid-crystal devices

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: March 24, 2006
Revised Manuscript: May 3, 2006
Manuscript Accepted: May 4, 2006
Published: May 15, 2006

Virtual Issues
Vol. 1, Iss. 6 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Philip J. W. Hands, Svetlana A. Tatarkova, Andrew K. Kirby, and Gordon D. Love, "Modal liquid crystal devices in optical tweezing: 3D control and oscillating potential wells," Opt. Express 14, 4525-4537 (2006)

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