Goos-Hnchen shifts of partially coherent light fields. Academic Article uri icon


  • The Goos-Hnchen (GH) shift refers to a lateral displacement (from the path expected from geometrical optics) along an interface in totally internal reflection. This phenomenon results from a coherence effect. In order to bring to light the role of coherence, the reflection of partially coherent light fields was investigated within the framework of the theory of coherence. A formal expression for the GH shifts of partially coherent light fields is obtained in terms of Mercer's expansion. It is shown that both the spatial coherence and the beam width have an important effect on the GH shift, especially near the critical angles (such as totally reflection angle). These results are important to observe the GH shifts of the beams with imperfect coherence, like x-ray and matter-wave beams.

published proceedings

  • Phys Rev Lett

altmetric score

  • 1.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Wang, L., Zhu, S., & Zubairy, M. S.

citation count

  • 30

complete list of authors

  • Wang, Li-Gang||Zhu, Shi-Yao||Zubairy, M Suhail

publication date

  • November 2013