Microlens-aided focusing of linearly and azimuthally polarized laser light

S. S. Stafeev, A. G. Nalimov, M. V. Kotlyar, D. Gibson, S. Song, L. O'Faolain, V. V. Kotlyar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


We have investigated a four-Sector transmission Polarization Converter (4-SPC) for a wavelength of 633 nm, that enables the conversion of a linearly polarized incident beam into a mixture of linearly and azimuthally polarized beams. It was numerically shown that by placing a Fresnel zone plate of focal length 532 nm immediately after the 4-SPC, the incident light can be focused into an oblong subwavelength focal spot whose size is smaller than the diffraction limit (with width and breadth, respectively, measuring FWHM = 0.28λ and FWHM = 0.45λ, where λ is the incident wavelength and FWHM stands for full-width at half maximum of the intensity). After passing through the 4-SPC, light propagates in free space over a distance of 300 μm before being focused by a Fresnel zone plate (ZP), resulting in focal spot measuring 0.42λ and 0.81λ. The focal spot was measured by a near-field microscope SNOM, and the transverse E-field component of the focal spot was calculated to be 0.42λ and 0.59λ. This numerical result was verified experimentally, giving a focal spot of smaller and larger size, respectively, measuring 0.46λ and 0.57λ. To our knowledge, this is the first implementation of polarization conversion and subwavelength focusing of light using a pair of transmission micro-optic elements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29800-29813
Number of pages14
JournalOptics Express
Issue number26
Early online date15 Dec 2016
Publication statusPublished - 26 Dec 2016


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