"This engagingly written text provides a useful pedagogical introduction to an extensive class of geometrical phenomena in the optics of polarization and phase, including simple explanations of much of the underlying mathematics." —Michael Berry, University of Bristol, UK
"The author covers a vast number of topics in great detail, with a unifying mathematical treatment. It will be a useful reference for both beginners and experts…." —Enrique Galvez, Charles A. Dana Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Colgate University
"a firm and comprehensive grounding both for those looking to acquaint themselves with the field and those of us that need reminding of the things we thought we knew, but hitherto did not understand: an essential point of reference." —Miles Padgett, Kelvin Chair of Natural Philosophy and Vice Principal (Research), University of Glasgow
This book focuses on the various forms of wavefield singularities, including optical vortices and polarization singularities, as well as orbital angular momentum and associated applications. It highlights how an understanding of singular optics provides a completely different way to look at light. Whereas traditional optics focuses on the shape and structure of the non-zero portions of the wavefield, singular optics describes a wave’s properties from its null regions. The contents cover the three main areas of the field: the study of generic features of wavefields, determination of unusual properties of vortices and wavefields that contain singularities, and practical applications of vortices and other singularities.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Vortices in Nature. Anatomy of a Vortex Beam (Introduction to Properties of Standard Laguerre-Gauss Laser Modes). Generic Properties of Phase Singularities (Generic Forms, Topological Charge, Pair Production). Generation and Detection of Optical Vortices. Angular Momentum of Light. Applications of Optical Vortices. Singularities of the Poynting Vector. Polarization Singularities. Vortices in Random Wavefields. Coherence Singularities. Singularities and Vortices in Quantum Optics. Optical Vortices in Complex Media. Unusual Singularities and Other Topological Tricks.
Gregory J. Gbur received a B.A. with honors from the University of Chicago in 1993 and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in 1996 and 2001. Since 2005, he has been a faculty member at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, becoming an Associate Professor in 2010. His research is in classical theoretical optics, focusing on singular optics, coherence theory, plasmonics and invisibility/cloaking. He has written or coauthored over 80 journal papers to date, including three reviews for Progress in Optics. He has written another textbook, Mathematical Methods for Optical Physics and Engineering. He has an active interest in science communication, writing the personal science blog Skulls in the Stars since 2007, and has written popular articles for a number of magazines, including La Recherche, American Scientist, and Optics and Photonics News.