During this last decade, several remarkable phenomena inherent to the nonlinear propagation of incoherent optical waves have been reported in the literature. This article is aimed at providing a generalized wave turbulence kinetic formulation of random nonlinear waves governed by the nonlinear Schrödinger equation in the presence of a nonlocal or a noninstantaneous nonlinear response function. Depending on the amount of nonlocal (noninstantaneous) nonlinear interaction and the amount of inhomogeneous (nonstationary) statistics of the incoherent wave, different types of kinetic equations are obtained. In the spatial domain, when the incoherent wave exhibits fluctuations that are statistically homogeneous in space, the relevant kinetic equation is the wave turbulence (Hasselmann) kinetic equation. It describes, in particular, the process of optical wave thermalization to thermodynamic equilibrium, which slows down significantly as the interaction becomes highly nonlocal. When the incoherent wave is characterized by inhomogeneous statistical fluctuations, different forms of the Vlasov equation are derived, which depend on the amount of nonlocality in the system. This Vlasov approach describes, in particular, the processes of incoherent modulational instability and the formation of localized incoherent soliton structures. In the temporal domain, the noninstantaneous nonlinear response function is constrained by the causality condition. It turns out that the relevant kinetic equation has a form analogous to the weak Langmuir turbulence equation, which describes, in particular, the formation of nonlocalized spectral incoherent solitons. In the regime of a highly noninstantaneous nonlinear response and a stationary statistics of the incoherent wave, the weak Langmuir turbulence equation reduces to the Korteweg–de Vries equation. Conversely, in the regime of a highly noninstantaneous response in the presence of a nonstationary statistics, we derive a long-range Vlasov-like kinetic equation in the temporal domain, whose self-consistent potential is constrained by the causality condition. From a broader perspective, this work indicates that the wave turbulence theory may constitute the appropriate theoretical framework to formulate statistical nonlinear optics.
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