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Optics Bookhunting Help

  1. Dec 14, 2008 #1
    Does anyone on here know of any good optics books out there? One with a good logical structure and derivations of relevant equations. See my field of interest is quantum computing and I've been told a good handle of optics is necessary, so I took a course and got almost nothing out of it, mostly because the book was terrible. Not good if the class is almost entirely book-based.

    Anyways, any tips on optics books?
    Thanks in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 14, 2008 #2
    optics - hecht

  4. Dec 14, 2008 #3


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    What kind of optics do you need to know?
    Hecht is a good intro with fairly low maths content but is a focussed on 'modern optics' - laser, fibres, etc rather than physical optics - lenses, cameras, telescopes.
    Most physical opticts books are very old jenkins+white, Pedrotti+pedrotti all feel like they were written 100years ago.
    Then there is a series on practical optical engineering by mcgraw-hill - look up Warren J. Smith.

    Finally there is Born+Wolf - this contains everything but nobody can read it, you read how it works in Hecht and then put in the page reference in B+W to scare students.
  5. Dec 14, 2008 #4

    Dr Transport

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    Hecht: the Schaum's outline........
  6. Dec 15, 2008 #5

    Andy Resnick

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    Do you need a quantum optics book? Or a book discussing coherence phenomena? The recommendations above are good for understanding the optical apparatus, but maybe not the physics of entangled states.

    I would recommend (for the above two areas) either Wolf's "Introduction to the theory of coherence and polarization fo light", Mandel and Wolf's "optical coherence and quantum optics", or Yariv's "quantum electronics". Loudon's "Quantum theory of light" is supposed to be excellent, but I have not read it.
  7. Jan 28, 2009 #6
    I was also looking for a book on quantum optics. I have Loudon's text, but it doesn't seem to be going into big details with the topics covered (reasonable, given the size of it), though it does seem like an excellent starting point. So I was considering a book with a more advanced treatment.
    How is Mandel and Wolf's "Optical Coherence and Quantum Optics", does it treat the topics formally (mathematically) with enough details (advanced treatments)? That is without resorting to too many approximations in order to give some qualitative ideas, but staying with good models.
  8. Jan 29, 2009 #7

    Andy Resnick

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    I like Mandel and Wolf's book. It's very detailed and takes some effort to get 'oriented' to the presentation style, but then it's very clear.
  9. Jan 29, 2009 #8
    not basic optics but I have found ""Fundementals of Photonics"" Saleh and Teich one of my most useful books and I currently do ultrafast and nonliner optics.
  10. Apr 18, 2009 #9
    A little late to respond, but thanks all you guys/gals for your suggestions. I got Hecht's book and so far its been great!
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