This chapter considers important phenomena appearing as a result of the interaction of coherent light with optically dense disordered media. These media are characterized by an extreme level of randomness. Light is typically scattered numerous times and loses information about its initial propagating direction but nevertheless preserves its coherence in certain conditions. The situation of coherent light propagating significant distances in scattering systems is not obvious. However, there are several classical examples of coherence persisting despite multiple scattering by the random media. Weak localization of light and related effects such as coherent backscattering is one example. Another illustration is the existence of temporal and spatial correlations of multiply scattered light, which reveals information on the microscopic dynamic and structure properties of the scattering system.
Most of the theoretical and experimental studies related to different manifestations of coherence in multiple scattering have been published during the last two decades, beginning with the classical works of Golubentsev, Stephen, and MacKintosh and John. This chapter briefly reviews the common aspects of coherence of light in multiple scattering that are important in gaining a better understanding of the optics of condensed media and of practical applications in industrial and medical diagnostics.
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