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We study partially coherent fields that have a coherent-mode representation in the orbital-angular-momentum-mode basis. For such fields, we introduce the concepts of the angular coherence function and the coherence angle. Such fields are naturally produced by the process of parametric down-conversion-a second-order nonlinear optical process in which a pump photon breaks up into two entangled photons, known as the signal and idler photons. We show that the angular coherence functions of the signal and idler fields are directly related to the angular Schmidt (spiral) spectrum of the down-converted two-photon field and thus that the angular Schmidt spectrum can be measured directly by measuring the angular coherence function of either the signal or the idler field, without requiring coincidence detection. 2011 American Physical Society.
author list (cited authors)
Jha, A. K., Agarwal, G. S., & Boyd, R. W.