VU Physics and Astronomy Colloquium

Friday, October 4. Refreshments in NSC Planetarium at 3:05 PM, followed by the colloquium in 221 at 3:30 PM.

Electromagnetic Black Holes: Faster Internet and a New View of the Universe

Peter Schemmel, University of Manchester, Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics


In 1992, researchers from the Netherlands showed that photons can occupy quantized orbital angular momentum (OAM) states. This is in addition to, and independent of, the spin angular momentum (SAM) that photons may also carry. The technology group from the Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, at the University of Manchester, is developing devices to manipulate OAM states at radio frequencies, with two objectives in mind. The first objective is to make initial astronomical observations of OAM radiation. The second is to develop OAM-based communication systems.

This talk will cover some of the history and facilities of the Jodrell Bank Observatory. A review of radio systems for astronomy and communication purposes will follow, with an introduction to SAM and OAM. The modeling, manufacture, and testing results of devices for the manipulation of OAM states will then be presented. Finally, the plans for OAM-based observing and data transfer systems will be outlined, along with other possible OAM technologies of the future.