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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Oct 17;101(16):163602. Epub 2008 Oct 17.

Spatial symmetry and conservation of orbital angular momentum in spontaneous parametric down-conversion.

Author information

1
Center for Photonic Communication and Computing, EECS Department, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208-3118, USA. sfeng@ece.northwestern.edu

Abstract

Directly contradictory arguments coexist regarding the conservation rule of orbital angular momentum in spontaneous parametric down-conversion. We analytically show how this rule is decided by spatial symmetry. We discover that the down-converted photon pairs can carry non-negligible extrinsic orbital angular momentum in the degrees of relative-movement freedom due to spatial symmetry breaking, leading to nonconservation of total orbital angular momentum in type-II down-conversion. Also, we demonstrate that the traditional technique does not measure the extrinsic orbital angular momentum.

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