Abstract

The traditional theory of radiative transfer has been generalized to make it more readily applicable to inhomogeneous media and dispersive systems. This was done by incorporating the idealized ray paths of the region under study into the time-dependent equation of transfer and permitting group-velocity variations among the rays. The use of idealized ray paths, instead of the assumption of rectilinear propagation, can greatly simplify the scattering functions of some media. An operator calculus was used to develop a scattering series solution to the time-dependent equation of transfer. The first-order solution was applied to the problem of pulse dispersion in multimode fibers. When supplemented by the appropriate fiber models, the theory proved useful for investigating the contributions of various phenomena to the complex problem of pulse dispersion.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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