Bohmian-Based Approach to Gauss-Maxwell Beams
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Usual Gaussian beams are particular scalar solutions to the paraxial Helmholtz equation, which neglect the vector nature of light. In order to overcome this inconvenience, Simon et al. (J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 1986, 3, 536–540) found a paraxial solution to Maxwell’s equation in vacuum, which includes polarization in a natural way, though still preserving the spatial Gaussianity of the beams. In this regard, it seems that these solutions, known as Gauss-Maxwell beams, are particularly appropriate and a natural tool in optical problems dealing with Gaussian beams acted or manipulated by polarizers. In this work, inspired in the Bohmian picture of quantum mechanics, a hydrodynamic-type extension of such a formulation is provided and discussed, complementing the notion of electromagnetic field with that of (electromagnetic) flow or streamline. In this regard, the method proposed has the advantage that the rays obtained from it render a bona fide description of the spatial distribution ...of electromagnetic energy, since they are in compliance with the local space changes undergone by the time-averaged Poynting vector. This feature confers the approach a potential interest in the analysis and description of single-photon experiments, because of the direct connection between these rays and the average flow exhibited by swarms of identical photons (regardless of the particular motion, if any, that these entities might have), at least in the case of Gaussian input beams. In order to illustrate the approach, here it is applied to two common scenarios, namely the diffraction undergone by a single Gauss-Maxwell beam and the interference produced by a coherent superposition of two of such beams.
Keywords:Gauss-Maxwell beams / optical ray / Bohmian mechanics / diffraction / two-slit interference / coherence
Source:APPLIED SCIENCES-BASEL, 2020, 10, 5