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Transverse energy circulation and the edge diffraction of an optical vortex beam

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Abstract

Edge diffraction of a circular Laguerre–Gaussian beam represents an example of the optical vortex symmetry breakdown in which the hidden “vortex” energy circulation is partially transformed into the visible “asymmetry” form. The diffracted beam evolution is studied in terms of the irradiance moments and the moment-based parameters. In spite of the limited applicability of the moment-based formalism, we show that the “vortex” and “asymmetry” parts of the orbital angular momentum can still be reasonably defined for the hard-edge diffracted beams and retain their physical role of quantifying the corresponding forms of the transverse energy circulation.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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