10 October 2012 WOW: light print, light propel, light point
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Abstract
We are presenting so-called Wave-guided Optical Waveguides (WOWs) fabricated by two-photon polymerization and capable of being optically manipulated into any arbitrary orientation. By integrating optical waveguides into the structures we have created freestanding waveguides which can be positioned anywhere in a sample at any orientation using real-time 3D optical micromanipulation with six degrees of freedom. One of the key aspects of our demonstrated WOWs is the change in direction of in-coupled light and the marked increase in numerical aperture of the out-coupled light. Hence, each light propelled WOW can tap from a relatively broad incident beam and generate a much more tightly confined light at its tip. The presentation contains both numerical simulations related to the propagation of light through a WOW and preliminary experimental demonstrations on our BioPhotonics Workstation. In a broader context, this research shows that optically trapped micro-fabricated structures can potentially help bridge the diffraction barrier. This structure-mediated paradigm may be carried forward to open new possibilities for exploiting beams from far-field optics down to the sub-wavelength domain.
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Jesper Glückstad, Andrew Bañas, Thomas Aabo, Darwin Palima, "WOW: light print, light propel, light point", Proc. SPIE 8458, Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX, 84581W (10 October 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.930826; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.930826
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