We present a new method for analyzing the propagation of short optical pulses through a dispersive medium. The idea is to decompose the pulse Fourier spectrum into an infinite set of elementary wave groups, each propagating with its own group velocity. Such a method may be generalized to the case of nonlinear self-phase-modulation and points out the asymmetry observed in the white-light continua generated in the femtosecond regime.
© 1993 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: September 24, 1992
Published: March 1, 1993
Marie May, C. Hirlimann, and J. F. Morhange, "Wave group decomposition of ultrashort light pulses," Opt. Lett. 18, 364-366 (1993)