Abstract

In generic three-dimensional optical fields the canonical point polarization singularities are points of circular polarization, C points on C lines, and points of linear polarization, L points on L lines. These special points are surrounded by a sea of ordinary points. In planes oriented normal to the principle axes of the polarization ellipse at the point, every ordinary point is also a singularity, here an ordinary polarization singularity, or O point. Interactions between O points, between O points and C points, and between O points and L points are described that highlight the fact that a consistent description of optical fields containing C and L lines must include O points.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

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