A spatial Fourier transform approach is used to study the phenomena of polarization changing and beam profile deformation of light during the Raman–Nath, acousto-optic interaction in isotropic media. Starting from the vector version of the well-known Raman–Nath interaction equation and using a spatial Fourier transform allows analytic solutions that encompass the effects of polarization changing and beam-profile deformation for the multiple scattered light to be found in the spatial-frequency domain. Two kinds of sound wave, longitudinal and shear, are assumed to be interacted with the light, whose transverse spatial profile and state of polarization are arbitrary. It is shown that, for light with an arbitrary spatial profile after interaction with the sound wave in the Raman–Nath regime, the spatial profiles of the scattered light are almost the same shape as those of the input light. For the polarization changing part, it is found that the state of polarization and the direction of rotation can alter, depending not only on the sound amplitude but also on the propagation mode of the sound wave. Simulation results are provided to confirm the validity of this approach.
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