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Forward second harmonic emission from laser plasma filaments

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2009

I. Deha
Affiliation:
Université des Sciences et de la Technologie Houari Boumedienne, Algiers,
V. Biancalana
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
F. Bianconi
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
M. Borghesi
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
P. Chessa
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
A. Giulietti
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
D. Giulietti
Affiliation:
Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Pisa, Pisa, Italy,
L. A. Gizzi
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
L. Nocera
Affiliation:
Istituto di Fisica Atomica e Molecolare, Via del Giardino 7, 56127 Pisa, Italy
E. Schifano
Affiliation:
Laboratoire pour l'Utilization des Lasers Intenses, École Polytechnique, Paris

Abstract

Experimental observations are reported on the interaction of 1-μm laser light with underdense plasmas (n ≤ 0·25 nc) from thin foil plastic targets. Nominal laser intensity on target was up to 3 × 1013 W/cm2 in a 3-ns pulse, but much higher intensity was reached due to spiky laser pulses. We studied forward-emitted second harmonic light as a diagnostic of the interaction and in particular of the occurrence of filamentation. Measurements included: energy monitoring of 2ω forward emission vs. target position and laser energy; time resolved (120-ps gate) imaging of the interaction region cross section. The second harmonic energy level was found to be sensitive to target position. In addition, the images obtained with the target in position of maximum second harmonic generation showed unstable structures whose scale length is comparable with the expected one for maximum filamentation growth. These results are shortly discussed in the framework of stationary filamentation theory and second harmonic generation in inhomogeneous media.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1992

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References

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