Abstract

We present optical trapping and manipulation of pure water and salt water airborne droplets of various sizes ranging from sub-micrometers up to several tens of micrometers in a holographic dual and single beam trap. In the dual beam trap, successful fusion of droplets as well as precise delivery of many droplets and manipulation of multiple droplets are demonstrated. Furthermore, employing the transfer of the orbital angular momentum of light from Laguerre–Gaussian beams, we show that the water droplets orbit around the beam propagation axis and their tangential speed can be controlled by beam waist magnitude. We also demonstrate that sub-micrometer sized pure water droplets can be trapped and manipulated by a single beam trap with a relatively low numerical aperture. In this case, multiple stable trapping positions were observed, both theoretically and experimentally, which were due to the optical intensity oscillations in the focal region of the laser beam.

© 2013 Optical Society of America

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