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Title: Complex vectorial beam state manipulation through gradient index optics
Author: He, Chao
ISNI:       0000 0004 9347 4984
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2020
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Gradient index (GRIN) lenses are commonly used for compact imaging systems. It is not widely appreciated that the ion-exchange process that creates the rotationally symmetric GRIN lens index profile also causes a symmetric birefringence variation. This property is usually considered a nuisance, such that manufacturing processes are optimized to keep it to a minimum. Here, rather than avoiding this birefringence, we understand, harness and overcome its effect by using GRIN lenses in cascade with other optical components to enable extra functionality in commonplace GRIN lens systems. I first show how the GRIN lens cascades can benefit research in the area of asymmetric Müller matrices and spin-orbital interaction of light, through taking advantage of their optical properties. I then show how birefringence in the GRIN cascades can generate vector vortex beams and foci, and how it can be used advantageously to improve axial resolution. Through using the birefringence for analysis, I show that the GRIN cascades form the basis of a new single-shot Müller matrix polarimeter with potential for endoscopic label-free cancer diagnostics. The versatility of these cascades opens up new technological directions. Additionally, with the help of vectorial adaptive optics, preliminary demonstrations of the correction of the birefringence effect of a GRIN lens were shown both in its pupil domain and focal domain. I finally give a summary of the whole thesis and provide an outlook for future work with an emphasis on novel fluorescence-based or label-free imaging systems empowered by GRIN lens cascades.
Supervisor: Booth, Martin Sponsor: European Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available