publication . Article . Other literature type . 1999

Caustics, multiply reconstructed by Talbot interference

Eberhard Bodenschatz; Michael V Berry;
Open Access
  • Published: 01 Feb 1999 Journal: Journal of Modern Optics, volume 46, pages 349-365 (issn: 0950-0340, eissn: 1362-3044, Copyright policy)
  • Publisher: Informa UK Limited
Abstract
In planar geometrical optics, the rays normal to a periodically undulating wavefront curve W generate caustic lines that begin with cusps and recede to infinity in pairs; therefore these caustics are not periodic in the propagation distance z. On the other hand, in paraxial wave optics the phase diffraction grating corresponding to W gives a pattern that is periodic in z, the period for wavelength lambda and grating period a being the Talbot distance, z(T) = a(2)/lambda, that becomes infinite in the geometrical limit. A model where W is sinusoidal gives a one-parameter family of diffraction fields, which we explore with numerical simulations, and analytically, t...
Subjects
arXiv: Physics::Optics
free text keywords: Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics, Talbot effect, Physics, Geometrical optics, Paraxial approximation, Caustic (optics), Grating, Ray, Physical optics, Diffraction, Optics, business.industry, business
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