Abstract

We show that finite external excitation can lead to a traveling wave in an excitable passive optical system with one-dimensional space geometry. We have studied the excitable behavior of this system in parallel with that of its diffusive counterpart and show the effects of optical phase on the traveling-wave solution and its velocity. In two-dimensional space we observe numerically rotating optical spiral waves evolving from a truncated planar wave front.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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