Abstract

Vector wave solutions are obtained for the propagation of beams of light in media having slow spatial variations of the gain, loss, or index of refraction. The formalism developed here is applicable to a wide range of problems, and an example considered in detail is the propagation of off-axis beams in lenslike laser materials and optical waveguides. A procedure is also described for the diagnosis of localized dielectric inhomogeneities such as plasmas by means of Gaussian laser beams.

© 1973 Optical Society of America

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