Tunneling of single-cycle terahertz pulses through waveguides

K. Wynne, J.J. Carey, J. Zawadzka, D.A. Jaroszynski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Propagation of single-cycle terahertz pulses through and past wavelength-sized metal structures has been studied experimentally. In waveguides close to cutoff, it is found that the phase velocity can become superluminal and even negative. Multiple reflections of evanescent waves inside the waveguide are found to be the cause of a negative phase velocity below the cutoff frequency. The centroid delay of terahertz pulses propagating past a thin metal wire is found to be advanced or delayed depending on the polarization with respect to the wire. In all cases of superluminal propagation described here, the principle of causality is preserved. In a restricted sense, exchange of information faster than the speed of light is found possible, however, the principle of causality ensures that information cannot advance by more than the inverse bandwidth of the signal. This eliminates causal-loop paradoxes and ensures that faster-than-light communication is not practical.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-435
Number of pages6
JournalOptics Communications
Volume176
Issue number4-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2000

Keywords

  • single-cycle terahertz pulses

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