Experimentally measured polarization singularity trefoil knot. Credit: University of Bristol
Physicists tie light in knots to understand how it flows through space - science news physics

Laser light may appear to be a single, focused beam. In fact, it is an electromagnetic field, vibrating in an ellipse shape at each point in space (the light is polarized). Now, scientists have been able to use holographic technology to twist a polarized laser beam into knots. This way, one can study the topology of the knotted light fields. The researchers were able to create knots of much greater complexity than previously possible. Understanding how light flows through space provides important information for the fields on optics and polarization and could lead to the creation of new devices which process information through customized complex light structures.

Read the full story: University of Bristol
Scientific publication: Nature Physics