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Optica Publishing Group
  • International Quantum Electronics Conference
  • OSA Technical Digest (Optica Publishing Group, 1998),
  • paper QWF9

Parametric downconversion and the orbital angular momentum of light

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The orbital angular momentum of light is distinct from the intrinsic angular momentum associated with the polarization state of the light. Thus linearly polarized laser modes can carry angular momentum. Such orbital angular momentum is associated with light beams with helical wave fronts, one class of which are Laguerre-Gaussian laser modes. The azimuthal phase factor exp(iℓϕ) in their field distribution, gives rise to an orbital angular momentum equivalent to ℓℏ per photon.

© 1998 Optical Society of America

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