Classical Optics

*NOTE: The majority of the following pages are taken broadly from the EECS 537 notes of Dr. Ted Norris, as well as from Born and Wolf’s “Modern Optics”.

Classical optics serves as a great introduction to the overall subject of optics. The “classical” part roughly means we will be covering material that could have been explained even prior to Einstein’s discovery of the quantum nature of light, or the photon. This ultimately serves to simplify our analysis a great deal. However, for those itching to see more of the quantum mechanical description of optics, I would suggest that you navigate to the Nonlinear optics section, where I discuss the photon picture more extensively.

The following sections go into further detail of various topics within Classical Optics:

Section 1: Classical Optics Introduction
Section 2: Wave Properties of Light
Section 3: The Propagation of Light
Section 4: Light-Matter Interactions
Section 5: Geometrical Optics
Section 6: Interferometry
Section 7: Diffraction
Section 8: Coherence Theory

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