• Kurt E. Oughstun
Part of the Springer Series in Optical Sciences book series (SSOS, volume 144)


Although the complete mathematical description of ultrawideband dispersive pulse propagation can be rather involved, its physical interpretation is really rather straightforward. Simply put, the input pulse spectrum is like a block of granite to a sculptor, the dispersive attenuative medium being the sculptor. Just as the sculptor never adds material to the block of granite, the material never adds spectral content to the pulse. Rather, it chips away at the spectral content, gradually shaping the pulse down to the precursor field structures that are a characteristic of the material dispersion (i.e., the temporal material response). The precursor fields are then already contained in the initial pulse. The more ultrawideband the pulse, the more they are completely present. Because the precursor fields are a characteristic of the dispersive material, they are precisely tuned to travel through that medium with minimal distortion and, most importantly, with minimal loss. This property makes them ideally suited for a variety of communication and imaging problems.


Defense Advance Research Project Agency Defense Advance Research Project Agency Beam Field Fresnel Reflection Coefficient Incident Wave Frequency 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kurt E. Oughstun
    • 1
  1. 1.College of Engineering & Mathematical Sciences School of EngineeringUniversity of VermontBurlingtonUSA

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