Abstract

We report the experimental observation of the fractional Fourier transform (FRT) for a partially coherent optical beam with Gaussian statistics [i.e., partially coherent Gaussian Schell-model (GSM) beam]. The intensity distribution (or beam width) and the modulus of the square of the spectral degree of coherence (or coherence width) of a partially coherent GSM beam in the FRT plane are measured, and the experimental results are analyzed and agree well with the theoretical results. The FRT optical system provides a convenient way to control the properties, e.g., the intensity distribution, beam width, spectral degree of coherence, and coherence width, of a partially coherent beam.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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