Random source for generating Airy-like spectral density in the far field

Baoyin Sun, Zhaofeng Huang, Xinlei Zhu, Dan Wu, Yahong Chen, Fei Wang, Yangjian Cai, Olga Korotkova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


A stationary beam forming an Airy-like spectral density in the far field is analyzed theoretically and experimentally. The Schell-model source that radiates such a beam is an extended version of a recently introduced source [O. Korotkova, et al., Opt. Lett. 43, 4727 (2018); X. Chen, et al., Opt. Lett. 44, 2470 (2019), in 1D and 2D, respectively]. We show, in particular, that the source degree of coherence, being the fourth-order root of a Lorentz-Gaussian function and having linear and cubic phase terms, may be either obtained from the Fourier transform of the far-field Airy-like pattern or at the source using the sliding function method. The spectral density of the beam is analyzed on propagation through paraxial ABCD optical systems, on the basis of the generalized Collins integral, by means of the derived closed-form expression. We show that the distribution of the side lobes in the Airy beam spectral density can be controlled by the parameters of the source degree of coherence. Further, an experiment involving a spatial light modulator (SLM) is carried out for generation of such a beam. We experimentally measure the complex degree of coherence of the source and observe the gradual formation of a high-quality Airy-like spectral density towards the far field. In addition, the trajectory of the intensity maxima of the beam after a thin lens is studied both theoretically and experimentally. The random counterpart of the classic, deterministic Airy beam may find applications in directed energy, imaging, beam shaping, and optical trapping.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7182-7196
Number of pages15
JournalOptics Express
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 2 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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