We introduce the generalized Airy-Gauss (AiG) beams and analyze their propagation through optical systems described by ABCD matrices with complex elements in general. The transverse mathematical structure of the AiG beams is form-invariant under paraxial transformations. The conditions for square integrability of the beams are studied in detail. The AiG beam describes in a more realistic way the propagation of the Airy wave packets because AiG beams carry finite power, retain the nondiffracting propagation properties within a finite propagation distance, and can be realized experimentally to a very good approximation.
©2007 Optical Society of America
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