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Opt Express. 2011 Aug 1;19(16):15560-73. doi: 10.1364/OE.19.015560.

Spontaneous and sequential transitions of a Gaussian beam into diffraction rings, single ring and circular array of filaments in a photopolymer.

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  • 1Department of Engineering Physics McMaster University, 1280 Main St W, Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M1, Canada.


A Gaussian beam propagating in a photopolymer undergoes self-phase modulation to form diffraction rings and then transforms into a single ring, which in turn ruptures into a necklace of stable self-trapped multimode filaments. The transitions of the beam between the three distinct nonlinear forms only occur at intensities where the beam-induced refractive index profile in the medium slowly evolves from a Gaussian to a flattened Gaussian.

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