Abstract

Birefringent particles rotate when trapped in elliptically polarized light. When an infinity corrected oil-immersion objective is used for trapping, rotation of birefringent particles in optical tweezers based on an infinity optical microscope is affected by the spherical aberration at the glass–water interface. The maximum rotation rate of birefringent particles occurs close to the coverslip, and the rotation rate decreases dramatically as the trapped depth increases. We experimentally demonstrate that spherical aberration can be compensated by using a finite-distance-corrected objective to trap and rotate the birefringent particles. It is found that the trapped depth corresponding to the maximum rotation rate is 50μm, and the rotation rates at deep trapped depths are improved.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

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