Mathematical Physics and Quantum Field Theory
Electron. J. Diff. Eqns., Conf. 04, 2000, pp. 37-50.

The measurable distinction between the spin and orbital angular momenta of electromagnetic radiation

James H. Crichton & Philip L. Marston

We show how the angular momentum of electromagnetic radiation may be decomposed into spin and orbital parts, of which the spin part is measurable in terms of Stokes parameters, thereby providing an unambiguous, gauge-invariant, distinction between the two parts.

Published July 12, 2000.
Mathematics Subject Classifications: 78A40, 78A46, 78A45, 81U40.
Key words: Electromagnetic Radiation, Scattering, Angular Momenta.

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James H. Crichton
Department of Physics
Seattle Pacific University
Seattle, Washington 98119

Philip L. Marston
Department of Physics
Washington State University
Pullman, Washington 99164

James Crichton (L) and Philip Marston (R) in the Cascade range, circa 1970.

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