The Fresnel formula for the normal incidence of a wave at the interface of dielectric media is generalized to the case of the reflection of radiation with a broad spectrum from a medium with nonresonance nonlinearity and dispersion. A model is constructed of the process whereby pulses composed of a small number of vibrations of the light field are reflected from an antireflection-coated interface. It is shown that, when the incident radiation has low intensity, self-splitting of the reflected pulse can take place when it is reflected from such a boundary, and, when the intensity is high, there can be a significant change of its shape, including self-squeezing. © 2004 Optical Society of America

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