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Singular knot bundle in light

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Abstract

As the size of an optical vortex knot, imprinted in a coherent light beam, is decreased, nonparaxial effects alter the structure of the knotted optical singularity. For knot structures approaching the scale of wavelength, longitudinal polarization effects become non-negligible, and the electric and magnetic fields differ, leading to intertwined knotted nodal structures in the transverse and longitudinal polarization components, which we call a knot bundle of polarization singularities. We analyze their structure using polynomial beam approximations and numerical diffraction theory. The analysis reveals features of spin–orbit effects and polarization topology in tightly focused geometry, and we propose an experiment to measure this phenomenon.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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