Abstract

We discuss several outstanding theoretical problems in optical diffusion in random media. Specifically, we discuss which of several diffusion theories most closely approximates exact solutions of the equation of transfer. We consider a plane wave impinging upon a plane-parallel slab of a random medium as a model problem to compare the diffusion theories with a numerical solution of the equation of transfer for continuous-wave, pulsed, and photon density waves. In addition, we discuss the validity of the diffusion approximation for a variety of parameter settings to ascertain the diffusion approximation’s applicability to imaging biological media.

© 1998 Optical Society of America

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