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Optical Helicity and Chirality: Conservation and Sources

School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK
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Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(5), 828; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9050828
Received: 14 February 2019 / Revised: 20 February 2019 / Accepted: 21 February 2019 / Published: 26 February 2019
We consider the helicity and chirality of the free electromagnetic field, and advocate the former as a means of characterising the interaction of chiral light with matter. This is in view of the intuitive quantum form of the helicity density operator, and of the dual symmetry transformation generated by its conservation. We go on to review the form of the helicity density and its associated continuity equation in free space, in the presence of local currents and charges, and upon interaction with bulk media, leading to characterisation of both microscopic and macroscopic sources of helicity. View Full-Text
Keywords: helicity; chirality; orbital angular momentum; dual symmetry; light–matter interactions; bi-isotropic media helicity; chirality; orbital angular momentum; dual symmetry; light–matter interactions; bi-isotropic media
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MDPI and ACS Style

Crimin, F.; Mackinnon, N.; Götte, J.B.; Barnett, S.M. Optical Helicity and Chirality: Conservation and Sources. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 828.

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