Shaping the future of manipulation

K. Dholakia, T. Čižmár

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

808 Citations (Scopus)


Optical forces can be used to manipulate biological and colloidal material in a non-contact manner. This forms the foundation of a wealth of exciting science, particularly in the fields of physics, biology and soft condensed matter. Although the standard Gaussian single-beam trap remains a very powerful tool, shaping the phase and amplitude of a light field provides unusual light patterns that add a major new dimension to research into particle manipulation. This Review summarizes the impact and emerging applications of shaped light in the field of optical manipulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-342
Number of pages8
JournalNature Photonics
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jun

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thank the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council for funding.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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