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Opt Express. 2000 Jul 17;7(2):77-87.

Focusing of high numerical aperture cylindrical-vector beams.


Cylindrical-vector beams are of increasing recent interest for their role in novel laser resonators and their applications to electron acceleration and scanning microscopy. In this paper, we calculate cylindrical-vector fields, near the focal region of an aplanatic lens, and briefly discuss some applications. We show that, in the particular case of a tightly focused, radially polarized beam, the polarization shows large inhomogeneities in the focal region, while the azimuthally polarized beam is purely transverse even at very high numerical apertures.

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