Abstract

We apply the quadrature-based perturbation method of Dalgarno and Lewis to the evaluation of the nonlinear optical response of quantum systems. This general operator method for perturbation theory allows us to derive exact expressions for the first three electronic polarizabilities, which requires only a good estimate of the ground state wave function, makes no explicit reference to the underlying potential, and avoids complexities arising from excited state degeneracies. We apply this method to simple examples in one-dimensional quantum mechanics for illustration, exploring the sensitivity of this method to variational solutions as well as poor numerical sampling. Finally, to the best of our knowledge, we extend the Dalgarno–Lewis method for the first time to time-harmonic perturbations, allowing dispersion characteristics to be determined from the unperturbed ground state wave function alone.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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