Research ArticleOPTICS

Selectively steering photon spin angular momentum via electron-induced optical spin Hall effect

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Science Advances  28 Apr 2021:
Vol. 7, no. 18, eabf8011
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abf8011


The development of the optical spin Hall effect (OSHE) realizes the splitting of different spin components, contributing to the manipulation of photon spin angular momentum that acts as the information carrier for quantum technology. However, OSHE with optical excitation lacks active control of photon angular momentum at deep subwavelength scale because of the optical diffraction limit. Here, we experimentally demonstrate a selective manipulation of photon spin angular momentum at a deep subwavelength scale via electron-induced OSHE in Au nanoantennas. The inversion of the OSHE radiation pattern is observed by angle-resolved cathodoluminescence polarimetry with the electron impact position shifting within 80 nm in a single antenna unit. By this selective steering of photon spin, we propose an information encoding with robustness, privacy, and high level of integration at a deep subwavelength scale for the future quantum applications.

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