Observation of accelerating Airy beams

Phys Rev Lett. 2007 Nov 23;99(21):213901. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.99.213901. Epub 2007 Nov 20.


We report the first observation of Airy optical beams. This intriguing class of wave packets, initially predicted by Berry and Balazs in 1979, has been realized in both one- and two-dimensional configurations. As demonstrated in our experiments, these Airy beams can exhibit unusual features such as the ability to remain diffraction-free over long distances while they tend to freely accelerate during propagation.