Optical angularmomentum flux
Barnett, S.M. (2002) Optical angularmomentum flux. Journal of Optics B: Quantum and Semiclassical Optics, 4 (2). S7S16. ISSN 14644266
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We introduce the angularmomentum flux as the natural description of the angular momentum carried by light. We present four main results: (i) angularmomentum flux is the flow of angular momentum across a surface and, in conjunction with the more familiar angularmomentum density, expresses the conservation of angular momentum. (ii) The angularmomentum flux for a light beam about its axis (or propagation direction) can be separated into spin and orbital parts. This separation is gauge invariant and does not rely on the paraxial approximation. (iii) Angularmomentum flux can describe the propagation of angular momentum in other geometries, but the identification of spin and orbital parts is then more problematic. We calculate the flux for a component of angular momentum that is perpendicular to the axis of a light beam and for the field associated with an electric dipole. (iv) The theory can be extended to quantum electrodynamics.


Item type: Article ID code: 2873 Dates: DateEventApril 2002PublishedKeywords: angular momentum, electromagnetic theory, photonics, optics, Optics. Light, Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous), Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics Subjects: Science > Physics > Optics. Light Department: Faculty of Science > Physics Depositing user: Mr Derek Boyle Date deposited: 05 Feb 2007 Last modified: 27 Aug 2021 03:03 URI: https://strathprints.strath.ac.uk/id/eprint/2873