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Proceedings Paper

Elliptic propagation-invariant optical fields: Mathieu beams
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Paper Abstract

The interest in propagation invariant optical fields (PIOF's) is due to the fact that, under optimal conditions, they propagate long distances without significant change of their transverse intensity distribution. These kind of wavefields were first identified and described in terms of Bessel function. Based on the separability of the Helmholtz equation in elliptic cylindrical coordinates we have demonstrated that there exist another class of PIOF's. The lowest order mode may have a highly localised distribution along one of the transverse directions and a sharply peaked quasi-periodic structure along the other. Higher order modes are composed of elliptical vortices and the corresponding intensity profiles are formed by propagation-invariant confocal elliptical rings. These fields are described by the Mathieu-Hankel functions which are exact solutions of Helmholtz equation and for this reason we have called them Mathieu beams. We demonstrate that Bessel beams are a particular case of Mathieu beams, which have a broader fan of interesting features. Since the Mathieu functions form a whole set of exact travelling wave solutions of the Helmholtz wave equation they can be used to describe a class of PIOF's. The McCutchen theorem provides the relation between the general class of PIOF's and these new beams.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 February 2003
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 4833, Applications of Photonic Technology 5, (17 February 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.473984
Show Author Affiliations
Sabino Chavez-Cerda, Instituto Nacional de Astrofisica Optica y Electronica (Mexico)
Marcelo David Iturbe Castillo, Instituto Nacional de Astrofisica Optica y Electronica (Mexico)
Julio Cesar Gutierrez-Vega, Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (Mexico)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4833:
Applications of Photonic Technology 5
Roger A. Lessard; George A. Lampropoulos; Gregory W. Schinn, Editor(s)

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