Extreme Waves and Branching Flows in Optical Media

  • Marios MattheakisEmail author
  • George P. Tsironis
Part of the Springer Series in Materials Science book series (SSMATERIALS, volume 221)


We address light propagation properties in complex media consisting of random distributions of lenses that have specific focusing properties. We present both analytical and numerical techniques that can be used to study emergent properties of light organization in these media. As light propagates, it experiences multiple scattering leading to the formation of light bundles in the form of branches; these are random yet occur systematically in the medium, particularly in the weak scattering limit. On the other hand, in the strong scattering limit we find that coalescence of branches may lead to the formation of extreme waves of the “rogue wave” type. These waves appear at specific locations and arise in the linear as well as in the nonlinear regimes. We present both the weak and strong scattering limit and show that these complex phenomena can be studied numerically and analytically through simple models.


Rogue Wave Time DomainFinite Difference Time Domain Method Extreme Wave Scintillation Index 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We acknowledge useful discussions with J.J. Metzger, R. Fleischmann and G. Neofotistos. This work was supported in part by the European Union program FP7-REGPOT-2012-2013-1 under grant agreement 316165.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Crete Center of Quantum Complexity and Nanotechnology (CCQCN), Department of PhysicsUniversity of CreteHeraklionGreece
  2. 2.Institute of Electronic Structure and Laser, Foundation for Research and Technology—Hellas (FORTH)HeraklionGreece
  3. 3.Department of Physics and School of Engineering and Applied SciencesHarvard UniversityCambridgeUSA
  4. 4.Department of PhysicsNazarbayev UniversityAstanaRepublic of Kazakhstan

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