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Opt Express. 2010 Oct 11;18(21):22348-57. doi: 10.1364/OE.18.022348.

Dynamic multiple-beam counter-propagating optical traps using optical phase-conjugation.

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  • 1Institute of Applied Physics, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Corrensstraße 2, 48149 Münster, Germany.


Counter-propagating optical traps are widely used where long working distances, axially symmetric trapping potentials, or standing light waves are required. We demonstrate that optical phase-conjugation can automatically provide a counter-propagating replica of a wide range of incident light fields in an optical trapping configuration. The resulting counter-propagating traps are self-adjusting and adapt dynamically to changes of the input light field. It is shown that not only single counter-propagating traps can be implemented by phase-conjugation, but also structured light fields can be used. This step towards more complex traps enables advanced state-of-the-art applications where multiple traps or other elaborated trapping scenarios are required. The resulting traps cannot only be used statically, but they can be rearranged in real-time and allow for interactive dynamic manipulation.

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