Structured light

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Colleges, School and Institutes


All light has structure, but only recently has it been possible to control it in all its degrees of freedom and dimensions, fuelling fundamental advances and applications alike. Here we review the recent advances in ‘pushing the limits’ with structured light, from traditional two-dimensional transverse fields towards four-dimensional spatiotemporal structured light and multidimensional quantum states, beyond orbital angular momentum towards control of all degrees of freedom, and beyond a linear toolkit to include nonlinear interactions, particularly for high-harmonic structured light. Using a simple interference argument, centuries old, we weave a story that highlights the common nature of seemingly diverse structures, presenting a modern viewpoint on the classes of structured light, and outline the possible future trends and open challenges.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-262
Number of pages10
JournalNature Photonics
Early online date30 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021