We consider the Heisenberg-Euler action for an electromagnetic field in vacuum, which includes quantum corrections to the Maxwell equations induced by photon-photon scattering. We show that, in some configurations, the plane monochromatic waves become unstable, due to the appearance of secularities in the dynamical equations. These secularities can be treated using a multiscale approach, introducing a slow time variable. The amplitudes of the plane electromagnetic waves satisfy a system of ordinary differential nonlinear equations in the slow time. The analysis of this system shows that, due to the effect of photon-photon scattering, in the unstable configurations the electromagnetic waves oscillate periodically between left-hand-sided and right-hand-sided polarizations. Finally, we discuss the physical implications of this finding and the possibility of disclosing traces of this effect in optical experiments.

Light polarization oscillations induced by photon-photon scattering

Briscese F.
2017

Abstract

We consider the Heisenberg-Euler action for an electromagnetic field in vacuum, which includes quantum corrections to the Maxwell equations induced by photon-photon scattering. We show that, in some configurations, the plane monochromatic waves become unstable, due to the appearance of secularities in the dynamical equations. These secularities can be treated using a multiscale approach, introducing a slow time variable. The amplitudes of the plane electromagnetic waves satisfy a system of ordinary differential nonlinear equations in the slow time. The analysis of this system shows that, due to the effect of photon-photon scattering, in the unstable configurations the electromagnetic waves oscillate periodically between left-hand-sided and right-hand-sided polarizations. Finally, we discuss the physical implications of this finding and the possibility of disclosing traces of this effect in optical experiments.
2017
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.
Pubblicazioni consigliate

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3451772
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 6
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact