Flexible particle manipulation techniques with conical refraction based optical tweezers

Craig McDougall*, Robert Henderson, David J. Carnegie, Grigorii S. Sokolovskii, Edik U. Rafailov, David McGloin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPublished conference contribution

10 Citations (Scopus)


We present an optimized optical tweezers system based upon the conical refraction of circularly polarized light in a biaxial crystal. The described optical arrangement avoids distortions to the Lloyd plane rings that become apparent when working with circularly polarized light in conventional optical tweezers. We demonstrate that the intensity distribution of the conically diffracted light permits optical manipulation of high and low refractive index particles simultaneously. Such trapping is in three dimensions and not limited to the Lloyd plane rings. By removal of a quarter waveplate the system also permits the study of linearly polarized conical refraction. We show that particle position in the Raman plane is determined by beam power, and indicates that true optical tweezing is not taking place in this part of the beam.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings: Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX
ISBN (Print)9780819491756
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2012
EventSPIE NanoScience + Engineering : Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IX - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: 12 Aug 201216 Aug 2012


ConferenceSPIE NanoScience + Engineering
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • Aerosols
  • Biaxial crystal
  • Conical refraction
  • Optical tweezers
  • Polarization


Dive into the research topics of 'Flexible particle manipulation techniques with conical refraction based optical tweezers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this