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Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B


  • Vol. 7, Iss. 1 — Jan. 1, 1990
  • pp: 73–83

Mutual beam reshaping by two interacting radiation modes

A. W. McCord and R. J. Ballagh  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA B, Vol. 7, Issue 1, pp. 73-83 (1990)

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The steady-state propagation of spatially nonuniform σ+ and σ beams coupled by means of a homogeneously broadened J = ½↔J = ½ transition is shown to give rise in many cases to a spatial separation of the beams The nature of the nonlinear coupling, which allows the response of one beam to be strongly affected by the presence of the other, and which is the root cause of the phenomenon, is examined in detail. Results for propagation both on and off resonance, with varying initial spatial configurations, demonstrate that the phenomenon of self-induced spatial separation of the copropagating components persists over a wide range of situations. A physical explanation is given in terms of an encoding/diffraction sequence, and the experimental implications are discussed

© 1990 Optical Society of America

Original Manuscript: February 1, 1989
Manuscript Accepted: August 31, 1989
Published: January 1, 1990

A. W. McCord and R. J. Ballagh, "Mutual beam reshaping by two interacting radiation modes," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 7, 73-83 (1990)

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  1. By beam reshaping we mean any self-induced change in the transverse intensity profile of a beam. This definition encompasses self-focusing, self-trapping, self-defocusing, self-bending, filamentation, and other more complicated phenomena.
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  16. W. J. Sandle, M. W. Hamilton, R. J. Ballagh, “Polarization switching with J= ½↔J= ½ atoms in a ring cavity,” in Optical Bistability 2, C. M. Bowden, H. M. Gibbs, S. L. McCall, eds. (Plenum, New York, 1984). [CrossRef]
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  19. Corrections for the nonisotropic nature of collisional relaxation have been discussed by Cooper et al.20 and are very small in the regime where the product of a Rabi frequency and a strong collision duration is small.
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  24. It is clear from the analytic models of Refs. 4 and 5 that the amplitude and phase behavior at the beam edges is critical to a correct description of propagation in saturable media. An efficient numerical method must therefore adequately resolve these off-axis spatial regions but can afford to have fewer computational points in the highly saturated beam core. This was achieved in the present research by implementation of a five-parameter transverse-map function. Two parameters were used to specify an algebraic rezoning to infinity. The remaining three parameters specified an additional tan−1region of high resolution. The position, width, and number of points in this additional region are chosen automatically as the solution develops and shifts to follow the contracting (or expanding) encoding region. Simpler dynamic rezoning techniques have been used previously in Maxwell–Bloch calculations (e.g., see Ref. 25).
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  28. We have verified this self-guiding nature of the final field configuration numerically by turning off the effect of the medium after the pure circularly polarized annulus and beam have formed. As expected, the σ+annulus collapses rapidly back on axis, and the σ−beam spreads diffractively.
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  31. William Happer, “Optical pumping,” Rev. Mod. Phys. 44, 169–249 (1972). [CrossRef]
  32. D. E. McClelland, “Magnetic field modification to laser propagation in a J = ½↔J= ½ system,” Ph.D. dissertation (University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand, 1987).
  33. A. C. Tarn, W. Happer, “Long-range interactions between cw self-focused laser beams in atomic vapor,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 38, 278–282 (1977). [CrossRef]
  34. J. C. Wang, H. A. Bachor, D. E. McClelland, Department of Australian Physics University National Australia Canberra (personal communication, 1989).

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