WIAS Preprint No. 1540, (2010)

Saturation of the all-optical Kerr effect


  • Brée, Carsten
  • Demircan, Ayhan
  • Steinmeyer, Günter

2010 Mathematics Subject Classification

  • 78A60

2008 Physics and Astronomy Classification Scheme

  • 42.65.Tg 42.65.-k 52.38.Hb 42.68.Ay


  • Nonlinear Optics, all-optical Kerr effect, Femtosecond Filamentation


Saturation of the intensity dependence of the refractive index is directly computed from ionization rates via a Kramers-Kronig transform. The linear intensity dependence and its dispersion are found in excellent agreement with complete quantum mechanical orbital computations. Higher-order terms concur with solutions of the time-dependent Schrödinger equation. Expanding the formalism to all orders up to the ionization potential of the atom, we derive a model for saturation of the Kerr effect. This model widely confirms recently published and controversially discussed experimental data and corroborates the importance of higher-order Kerr terms for filamentation.

Appeared in

  • Phys. Rev. Lett., 106 (2011) pp. 183902/1-183902/4.

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