To obtain analytical results, theoretical descriptions of two-wave mixing in photorefractive (PR) materials1,2 are usually restricted to plane-wave optical fields of unlimited spatial extent. M. Moharam et al.3 gave a mathematical analysis of the diffraction properties of a grating formed by the interference of two finite-extent, Gaussian beams in a photosensitive, but not photorefractive, medium. We extend the previous theoretical descriptions of PR two-wave mixing to include explicitly the dependence of the photorefractively induced energy coupling on the finite extent and amplitude spatial profiles of the mutually coherent, interfering optical beams.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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