Abstract

An analytical expression for the degenerate four-wave mixing signal produced in a medium composed of two-level atoms by pump and probe lasers of arbitrary intensities and parallel linear polarization, suffering negligible absorption and depletion, has been derived. The Abrams–Lind approach [Opt. Lett. 2, 94 and 3, 205 (1978)] for deriving the phase-matched polarization has been extended to find all the other higher-order polarization terms contributing to the signal. The signal field amplitude is expressed as an infinite series whose convergence rate depends on the intensity of the input fields and their detuning from resonance. The solution is successfully verified by comparison with a full numerical nonperturbative calculation and is found to be equivalent to the Abrams–Lind result in the limit of weak probe intensity. The result is used to calculate the saturation effects on spectral line shape that are relevant to simulation of molecular spectra obtained by degenerate four-wave mixing with saturating pump and probe fields. The result is extended to treat atomic motion in the case of forward geometry of the input beams.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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