Abstract

Azimuthally polarized beams, focused by a high-numerical-aperture (NA) objective lens, form a hollow intensity distribution near the focus, which is appropriate for trapping low-refractive-index particles, in contrast to common linearly polarized or radially polarized beams. In this paper, the field distribution of the azimuthally polarized beam focused by a high-NA objective is described by the vectorial diffraction integral, and then the radiation forces on spherical particles with different parameters such as radius and refractive index are calculated by the T-matrix method. Numerical results show that the azimuthally polarized beam not only can steadily trap low-refractive-index particles at the focus center but also can trap multiple high-refractive-index particles around the focus center by virtue of the hollow-ring configuration. The range of the sizes of low-refractive-index particles that can be trapped steadily are presented, corresponding to different parameters such as the NA of the objective and the relative refractive index, based on which the NA of the objective can be selected to trap the appropriate size of particles.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

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