Measuring the optical properties of aerosols using a counter-propagating Bessel beam optical trap

A. E. Carruthers, B. J. Mason, J.W. Walker, A. Casey, A.J. Orr-Ewing and J.P. Reid A

We demonstrate an optical system that allows the characterisation of aerosol particles through confinement and isolation in a counter-propagating optical trap using Bessel beams. Laser light at a wavelength of 532 nm is used to optically confine droplets well away from any surface, and allows characterisation through observation of the elastically scattered light. In addition to observation of the optical trapping light, two probe laser beams are introduced at 405 nm and 633 nm. This allows particle size determination and insight into the refractive index. Particle size selection is possible through changes in the trapping beam diameter and core intensity.

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