Do waves carrying orbital angular momentum possess azimuthal linear momentum?

Fiona C. Speirits, Stephen M. Barnett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

All beams are a superposition of plane waves, which carry linear momentum in the direction of propagation with no net azimuthal component. However, plane waves incident on a hologram can produce a vortex beam carrying orbital angular momentum that seems to require an azimuthal linear momentum, which presents a paradox. We resolve this by showing that the azimuthal momentum is not a true linear momentum but the azimuthal momentum density is a true component of the linear momentum density.

LanguageEnglish
Article number103602
Number of pages3
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume111
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sep 2013

Fingerprint

angular momentum
momentum
orbitals
plane waves
paradoxes
vortices
propagation

Keywords

  • beams
  • vortex beams
  • orbital angular momentum
  • azimuthal linear momentum
  • linear momentum density

Cite this

Speirits, Fiona C. ; Barnett, Stephen M. / Do waves carrying orbital angular momentum possess azimuthal linear momentum?. In: Physical Review Letters. 2013 ; Vol. 111, No. 10.
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Do waves carrying orbital angular momentum possess azimuthal linear momentum? / Speirits, Fiona C.; Barnett, Stephen M.

In: Physical Review Letters, Vol. 111, No. 10, 103602, 04.09.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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KW - linear momentum density

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