Paper, milk, clouds and white paint share a common property: they are opaque disordered media through which light scatters randomly rather than propagating in a straight path. For very thick and turbid media, indeed, light eventually propagates in a ‘diffusive’ way, i.e. similarly to how tea infuses through hot water. Frequently though, a material is neither perfectly opaque nor transparent and the simple diffusion model does not hold. In this work, we developed a novel optical-gating setup that allowed us to observe light transport in scattering media with sub-ps time resolution. An array of unexplored aspects of light propagation emerged from this spatio-temporal description, unveiling transport regimes that were previously inaccessibile due to the extreme time scales involved and the lack of analytical models.
LENS, European Laboratory for Non-Linear Spectroscopy, Italy - ORCID: 0000-0001-5040-5282