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Publication# Spectral self-imaging of optical orbital angular momentum modes

Abstract

The Talbot self-imaging effect is mostly present in the forms of space or time, or in the frequency domain by the Fourier duality. Here, we disclose a new spectral Talbot effect arising in optical orbital angular momentum (OAM) modes. The effect occurs in the context of petal-like beams, which are typically constructed from a number of in-phase equidistant OAM modes with at least one void mode in between. When illuminating such beams on phase masks that are azimuthally modulated with Talbot phases, the initial OAM modes are self-imaged to create new OAM modes, meanwhile preserving the initial OAM spectral profile. Such a phenomenon is theoretically predicted, and a close analogy is drawn with the spectral Talbot effect of frequency combs. The prediction is also experimentally confirmed by observing versatile spectral self-imaging on various optical petal-like beams.& nbsp; 2021 Author(s). All article content, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

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Related concepts (5)

Orbital angular momentum of light

The orbital angular momentum of light (OAM) is the component of angular momentum of a light beam that is dependent on the field spatial distribution, and not on the polarization. It can be further split into an internal and an external OAM. The internal OAM is an origin-independent angular momentum of a light beam that can be associated with a helical or twisted wavefront. The external OAM is the origin-dependent angular momentum that can be obtained as cross product of the light beam position (center of the beam) and its total linear momentum.

Frequency domain

In mathematics, physics, electronics, control systems engineering, and statistics, the frequency domain refers to the analysis of mathematical functions or signals with respect to frequency, rather than time. Put simply, a time-domain graph shows how a signal changes over time, whereas a frequency-domain graph shows how the signal is distributed within different frequency bands over a range of frequencies. A frequency-domain representation consists of both the magnitude and the phase of a set of sinusoids (or other basis waveforms) at the frequency components of the signal.

Talbot effect

The Talbot effect is a diffraction effect first observed in 1836 by Henry Fox Talbot. When a plane wave is incident upon a periodic diffraction grating, the image of the grating is repeated at regular distances away from the grating plane. The regular distance is called the Talbot length, and the repeated images are called self images or Talbot images. Furthermore, at half the Talbot length, a self-image also occurs, but phase-shifted by half a period (the physical meaning of this is that it is laterally shifted by half the width of the grating period).