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Proceedings Paper

Local particle view of a propagating pulse
Author(s): Leon Cohen
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Paper Abstract

We present exact results for pulse propagation in a dispersive medium, including the contraction and spreading of the pulse, the covariance between position and wave number and other relevant physical quantities. An analogy is made, both physical and mathematical, describing wave propagation as a collection of particles whose motion is simple. We show that wave motion governed by linear wave equations can be mimicked by particles that move with a constant velocity, but where the velocity is a function of the original position of the particles. Using this picture one can understand the behavior of waves in a simple manner. We also develop the same viewpoint from the perspective of the Wigner distribution. 7

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 March 2001
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4391, Wavelet Applications VIII, (26 March 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.421203
Show Author Affiliations
Leon Cohen, CUNY/Hunter College (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4391:
Wavelet Applications VIII
Harold H. Szu; David L. Donoho; Adolf W. Lohmann; William J. Campbell; James R. Buss, Editor(s)

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