We show explicitly how the commonly adopted prescription for calculating effective mode volumes is wrong and leads to uncontrolled errors. Instead, we introduce a generalized mode volume that can be easily evaluated based on the mode calculation methods typically applied in the literature, and which allows one to compute the Purcell effect and other interesting optical phenomena in a rigorous and unambiguous way.
© 2012 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: February 21, 2012
Revised Manuscript: March 6, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: March 6, 2012
Published: May 9, 2012
P. T. Kristensen, C. Van Vlack, and S. Hughes, "Generalized effective mode volume for leaky optical cavities," Opt. Lett. 37, 1649-1651 (2012)