Fermat's principle and the formal equivalence of local light-ray rotation and refraction at the interface between homogeneous media with a complex refractive index ratio

Sundar, B., Hamilton, A.C. and Courtial, J. (2009) Fermat's principle and the formal equivalence of local light-ray rotation and refraction at the interface between homogeneous media with a complex refractive index ratio. Optics Letters, 34(3), pp. 374-376. (doi:10.1364/OL.34.000374)

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Abstract

We derive a formal description of local light-ray rotation in terms of complex refractive indices. We show that Fermat's principle holds, and we derive an extended Snell's law. The change in the angle of a light ray with respect to the normal of a refractive index interface is described by the modulus of the refractive index ratio; the rotation around the interface normal is described by the argument of the refractive index ratio.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This paper was published in Optics Letters and is made available as an electronic reprint with the permission of OSA. The paper can be found at the following URL on the OSA website: http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OL.34.000374. Systematic or multiple reproduction or distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Courtial, Dr Johannes
Authors: Sundar, B., Hamilton, A.C., and Courtial, J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Optics Letters
Publisher:Optical Society of America
ISSN:0146-9592
ISSN (Online):1539-4794
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2009 Optical Society of America
First Published:First published in Optics Letters 34(3):374-376
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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