Complex index of refraction

  • Thread starter Niles
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  • #1
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Hi

When we have a complex index of refraction, the real part determines the phase-change of the incoming wave and the complex part attenuates the wave. When we e.g. want to find the phase velocity using v = c/n, when should we use the real part of n or the modulus of n?

Best,
Niles.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
DrDu
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Hence a monochromatic wave would be [tex]\exp(i\omega(nx/c-t) =\exp(-\omega \Im(n)x/c)\exp(i\omega\Re(n)x/c-t)[/tex].So points of constant phase are determined by Re(n)x/c-t=const which move with the speed c/Re(n).
 
  • #3
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I see, thanks!
 

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