Recent work1,2 has shown that the interaction of two counterpropagating laser beams in various nonlinear media can show very complex behavior. For a Brillouin-active medium, counterpropagating fields have been shown theoretically to be unstable to the growth of temporal fluctuations3,4 at input intensities below those required for the occurrence of single beam stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS). This instability can lead to periodic or in some cases to chaotic fluctuations in the output intensities.4

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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