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- International conference on Ultrafast Optical Science
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- National Science Foundation
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Enhanced Amplification of Attosecond Pulses in a Hydrogen-like Plasma-Based X-ray Laser Modulated by an Infrared Field at the Second Harmonic of Fundamental FrequencyIn a recent work (Antonov et al., Physical Review Letters 123, 243903 (2019)), it was shown that it is possible to amplify a train of attosecond pulses, which are produced from the radiation of high harmonics of the infrared field of the fundamental frequency, in the active medium of a plasma-based X-ray laser modulated by a replica of the infrared field of the same frequency. In this paper, we show that much higher amplification can be achieved using the second harmonic of the fundamental frequency for modulating of a hydrogen-like active medium. The physical reason for such enhanced amplification is the possibility to use all (even and odd) sidebands induced in the gain spectrum in the case of the modulating field of the doubled fundamental frequency, while only one set of sidebands (either even or odd) could participate in amplification in the case of the modulating field of the fundamental frequency due to the fact that the spectral components of the high-harmonic field are separated by twice the fundamental frequency. Using the plasma of hydrogen-like C5+ ions with an inverted transition wavelength of 3.38 nm in the water window as an example, it is shown that the use of amore »
The advent of chirped-pulse amplification in the 1980s and femtosecond Ti:sapphire lasers in the 1990s enabled transformative advances in intense laser–matter interaction physics. Whereas most of experiments have been conducted in the limited near-infrared range of 0.8–1 μm, theories predict that many physical phenomena such as high harmonic generation in gases favor long laser wavelengths in terms of extending the high-energy cutoff. Significant progress has been made in developing few-cycle, carrier-envelope phase-stabilized, high-peak-power lasers in the 1.6–2 μm range that has laid the foundation for attosecond X ray sources in the water window. Even longer wavelength lasers are becoming available that are suitable to study light filamentation, high harmonic generation, and laser–plasma interaction in the relativistic regime. Long-wavelength lasers are suitable for sub-bandgap strong-field excitation of a wide range of solid materials, including semiconductors. In the strong-field limit, bulk crystals also produce high-order harmonics. In this review, we first introduce several important wavelength scaling laws in strong-field physics, then describe recent breakthroughs in short- (1.4–3 μm), mid- (3–8 μm), and long-wave (8–15 μm) infrared laser technology, and finally provide examples of strong-field applications of these novel lasers. Some of the broadband ultrafast infrared lasers will have profound effects on medicine, environmental protection, and national defense,more »
The shortest light pulses produced to date are of the order of a few tens of attoseconds, with central frequencies in the extreme UV range and bandwidths exceeding tens of electronvolts. They are often produced as a train of pulses separated by half the driving laser period, leading in the frequency domain to a spectrum of high, odd-order harmonics. As light pulses become shorter and more spectrally wide, the widely used approximation consisting of writing the optical waveform as a product of temporal and spatial amplitudes does not apply anymore. Here, we investigate the interplay of temporal and spatial properties of attosecond pulses. We show that the divergence and focus position of the generated harmonics often strongly depend on their frequency, leading to strong chromatic aberrations of the broadband attosecond pulses. Our argument uses a simple analytical model based on Gaussian optics, numerical propagation calculations, and experimental harmonic divergence measurements. This effect needs to be considered for future applications requiring high-quality focusing while retaining the broadband/ultrashort characteristics of the radiation.
Amplification of elliptically polarized sub-femtosecond pulses in neon-like X-ray laser modulated by an IR field
Amplification of attosecond pulses produced via high harmonic generation is a formidable problem since none of the amplifiers can support the corresponding PHz bandwidth. Producing the well defined polarization state common for a set of harmonics required for formation of the circularly/elliptically polarized attosecond pulses (which are on demand for dynamical imaging and coherent control of the spin flip processes) is another big challenge. In this work we show how both problems can be tackled simultaneously on the basis of the same platform, namely, the plasma-based X-ray amplifier whose resonant transition frequency is modulated by an infrared field.
Generation of even and odd high harmonics in resonant metasurfaces using single and multiple ultra-intense laser pulsesAbstract High harmonic generation (HHG) opens a window on the fundamental science of strong-field light-mater interaction and serves as a key building block for attosecond optics and metrology. Resonantly enhanced HHG from hot spots in nanostructures is an attractive route to overcoming the well-known limitations of gases and bulk solids. Here, we demonstrate a nanoscale platform for highly efficient HHG driven by intense mid-infrared laser pulses: an ultra-thin resonant gallium phosphide (GaP) metasurface. The wide bandgap and the lack of inversion symmetry of the GaP crystal enable the generation of even and odd harmonics covering a wide range of photon energies between 1.3 and 3 eV with minimal reabsorption. The resonantly enhanced conversion efficiency facilitates single-shot measurements that avoid material damage and pave the way to study the controllable transition between perturbative and non-perturbative regimes of light-matter interactions at the nanoscale.