Abstract

The vortex beam which carries the orbital angular momentum has versatile applications, such as high-resolution imaging, optical communications, and particle manipulation. Generating vortex beams with the Pancharatnam–Berry (PB) phase has drawn considerable attention for its unique spin-to-orbital conversion features. Despite the PB phase being frequency independent, an optical element with broadband high-efficiency circular polarization conversion feature is still needed for the broadband high-efficiency vortex beam generation. In this work, a broadband and high-efficiency vortex beam generator based on the PB phase is built with a hybrid helix array. Such devices can generate vortex beams with arbitrary topological charge. Moreover, vortex beams with opposite topological charge can be generated with an opposite handedness incident beam that propagates backward. The measured efficiency of our device is above 65% for a wide frequency range, with the relative bandwidth of 46.5%.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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