Manipulating and Probing Angular Momentum and Quantized Circulation in Optical Fields and Matter Waves
AuthorLowney, Joseph Daniel
AdvisorAnderson, Brian P.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractMethods to generate, manipulate, and measure optical and atomic fields with global or local angular momentum have a wide range of applications in both fundamental physics research and technology development. In optics, the engineering of angular momentum states of light can aid studies of orbital angular momentum (OAM) exchange between light and matter. The engineering of optical angular momentum states can also be used to increase the bandwidth of optical communications or serve as a means to distribute quantum keys, for example. Similar capabilities in Bose-Einstein condensates are being investigated to improve our understanding of superfluid dynamics, superconductivity, and turbulence, the last of which is widely considered to be one of most ubiquitous yet poorly understood subjects in physics. The first part of this two-part dissertation presents an analysis of techniques for measuring and manipulating quantized vortices in BECs. The second part of this dissertation presents theoretical and numerical analyses of new methods to engineer the OAM spectra of optical beams. The superfluid dynamics of a BEC are often well described by a nonlinear Schrodinger equation. The nonlinearity arises from interatomic scattering and enables BECs to support quantized vortices, which have quantized circulation and are fundamental structural elements of quantum turbulence. With the experimental tools to dynamically manipulate and measure quantized vortices, BECs are proving to be a useful medium for testing the theoretical predictions of quantum turbulence. In this dissertation we analyze a method for making minimally destructive in situ observations of quantized vortices in a BEC. Secondly, we numerically study a mechanism to imprint vortex dipoles in a BEC. With these advancements, more robust experiments of vortex dynamics and quantum turbulence will be within reach. A more complete understanding of quantum turbulence will enable principles of microscopic fluid flow to be related to the statistical properties of turbulence in a superfluid. In the second part of this dissertation we explore frequency mixing, a subset of nonlinear optical processes in which one or more input optical beam(s) are converted into one or more output beams with different optical frequencies. The ability of parametric nonlinear processes such as second harmonic generation or parametric amplification to manipulate the OAM spectra of optical beams is an active area of research. In a theoretical and numerical investigation, two complimentary methods for sculpting the OAM spectra are developed. The first method employs second harmonic generation with two non-collinear input beams to develop a broad spectrum of OAM states in an optical field. The second method utilizes parametric amplification with collinear input beams to develop an OAM-dependent gain or attenuation, termed dichroism for OAM, to effectively narrow the OAM spectrum of an optical beam. The theoretical principles developed in this dissertation enhance our understanding of how nonlinear processes can be used to engineer the OAM spectra of optical beams and could serve as methods to increase the bandwidth of an optical signal by multiplexing over a range of OAM states.
Degree ProgramGraduate College