Topological polarization singularities in metaphotonics

Wenzhe Liu, Wei Liu, Lei Shi, Yuri Kivshar
2021 Nanophotonics  
Polarization singularities of vectorial electromagnetic fields locate at the positions where properties of polarization ellipses are not defined. First observed for conical diffraction in 1830s, polarization singularities have been studied systematically with the underlying concepts being reshaped and deepened by many pioneers of wave optics. Here we review the recent results on the generation and observation of polarization singularities in metaphotonics. We start with the discussion of
more » ... ation singularities in the Mie theory, where both electric and magnetic multipoles are explored from perspectives of local and global polarization properties. We then proceed with the discussion of various photonic-crystal structures, for which both near- and far-field patterns manifest diverse polarization singularities characterized by the integer Poincaré or more general half-integer Hopf indices (topological charges). Next, we review the most recent studies of conversions from polarization to phase singularities in scalar wave optics, demonstrating how bound states in the continuum can be exploited to generate directly optical vortices of various charges. Throughout our paper, we discuss and highlight several fundamental concepts and demonstrate their close connections and special links to metaphotonics. We believe polarization singularities can provide novel perspectives for light-matter manipulation for both fundamental studies and their practical applications.
doi:10.1515/nanoph-2020-0654 fatcat:uy7zrcoozbaadm4qa6jznabw5q