Optics in the multipole approximation: from atomic systems to solids

Andreas Knorr, Stephan W. Koch, Weng W. Chow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Starting from the microscopic light-matter interaction in form of the minimal coupling Hamiltonian, the multipole approximation for the optical response of localized electrons in atomic systems is extended to delocalized electrons in solids. A spatial averaging procedure is used to derive the electromagnetic sources for macroscopic Maxwell's equations as well as the corresponding many particle Hamiltonian on a coarse grained length scale. The results are illustrated for semiconductor bulk material up to quadrupole moments for the interband transitions, where gauge invariant equations of motion for the optical response are obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)167-178
Number of pages12
JournalOptics Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 25 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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