By Professor Dr. Werner Lauterborn, Dr. rer. nat. Thomas Kurz, Dipl.-Phys. Martin Wiesenfeldt (auth.)
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Propagation direction. The parameter a is connected with the width of the central peak, the width being smaller the larger a is, a ~ k = 2n/A,. In the limit a = k, it reaches the size of a wavelength; that is, it can become quite small. Nevertheless, no broadening occurs upon propagation through free space. Hence the name "diffraction-free". 65) for a =0. The Bessel wave, like the plane wave, has no finite energy, but has a finite energy density. Therefore it can be realized only approximately.
As with the degree of self coherence, the contrast of interference fringes can be determined from the degree of mutual coherence K =Imax -/min =2 v'f'11(O)r22(0) I'Yt2(T)l. 60) When the two interfering waves are of equal intensity, we again have K =I'Yt2(T)l. 61) The mutual coherence function and the degree of mutual coherence contain the influence of both temporal and spatial coherence. 2I - 0 (complete) incoherence. When speaking of complete incoherence we have to omit the entries T =0 and r 1 =r 2 , as then, for a nonvanishing field, Yt2 always equals unity.
This case, too, is realized only approximately. Good examples are daylight and incandescent light. The two limiting cases of completely coherent and completely incoherent light are depicted in Fig. 4 and Fig. 5, respectively, with the graphs E(t) Imr K (-r) 1 Rer o+--------o Fig. 5. Graph of the field amplitude E, the self coherence function r, and the contrast function K for completely incoherent light. 1 Temporal Coherence Imr 37 K(-r) 1 0+-----~~------ 0 Fig. 6. Graph of the field amplitude E, the self coherence function contrast function K for light from a mercury-vapor lamp.