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Chapter 5:
Propagation Simulation

Now we look at several implementations of the diffraction expressions of Chapter 4 to simulate optical propagation. Although the material is presented as a teaching exercise, these propagation methods are used extensively in research and industry for modeling laser beam propagation. The concentration is on methods that use the fast Fourier transform (FFT) and only monochromatic light will be considered here. When designing a simulation there are a variety of issues related to discrete sampling that need to be considered. We will get to that, but let's first get our feet wet with some programming.

5.1 Fresnel Transfer Function (TF) Propagator

The Fresnel diffraction expression is often the approach of choice for simulations since it applies to a wide range of propagation scenarios and is relatively straightforward to compute. A common propagation routine is based on Eq. (4.18), which is repeated here for reference,


and uses the transfer function H given by


Start a New M-file and save it with name "propTF." Enter the following function:

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