Wavefront and caustics of a plane wave refracted by an arbitrary surface

Academic Article


  • A simple expression is given for the k-function associated with the general solution of Stavroudis to the eikonal equation for refraction or reflection of a plane wave from an arbitrary surface. Using this result, we specialize the solution to derive analytic expressions for the wavefront and caustic surfaces after refraction of a plane wave from any rotationally symmetric surface. The method is applied to evaluating and comparing the wave-front and caustic surfaces formed both by a planospherical lens and a planoaspheric lens used for laser beam shaping, which provides understanding of how the irradiance is redistributed over a beam as the wavefront folds back on itself within the focal region. © 2008 Optical Society of America.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Shealy DL; Hoffnagle JA
  • Start Page

  • 2370
  • End Page

  • 2382
  • Volume

  • 25
  • Issue

  • 9