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Top Story

New breed of optical soliton wave discovered

Solitons are localized waves that act like particles: as they travel across space, they hold their shape and form rather than dispersing as other waves do. Under normal conditions, waves tend to dissipate as they travel through space. Toss a stone into a pond, and the ripples will slowly die down as they spread out away from the point of impact. Solitons, on the other hand, do not. National Science Foundation-funded scientists have discovered a new type of optical soliton wave that travels in the wake of other soliton waves, hitching a ride on and feeding off of the energy of the other wave.

Visit Website | Image credit: Qi-Fan Yang/Caltech