Abstract

Based on the vector Fresnel diffraction integrals, analytical expressions for the electric and magnetic components of first-order Laguerre–Gaussian beams diffracted at a half-plane screen are derived and used to study the electric and magnetic polarization singularities in the diffraction field for both two- and three-dimensional (2D and 3D) cases. It is shown that there exist 2D and 3D electric and magnetic polarization singularities in the diffraction field, which do not coincide each other in general. By suitably varying the waist width ratio, off-axis displacement parameter, amplitude ratio, or propagation distance, the motion, pair-creation, and annihilation of circular polarization singularities, and the motion of linear polarization singularities take place in 2D and 3D electric and magnetic fields. The V point, at which two circular polarization singularities with the same topological charge but opposite handedness collide, appears in the 2D electric field under certain conditions in the diffraction field and free-space propagation. A comparison with the free-space propagation is also made.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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