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New results obtained in experiments on laser irradiation (I = 5 × 1013 W/cm2, λ = 1.054 µm) of low-density (2–10 mg/cm3) porous materials (agar, triacetate cellulose, and foam polysterene) are presented and discussed from the standpoint of optimum porous material utilization in target designs for inertial confinement fusion. The influence of low-density material microstructure of irradiated samples on the absorption of laser radiation and the energy transfer processes was investigated using X-ray and optical diagnostic methods with high temporal and spatial resolution.
The interaction of powerful laser and X-ray pulses
with planar low average density (0.5–10 mg/cm3)
porous agar-agar targets was experimentally studied. At
a laser power density of ∼5 × 1013
W/cm2 (λ = 1.054 μm) the laser light
absorption and following energy transfer processes, as well
as dynamics of produced plasma were investigated in detail
with a variety of optical and X-ray diagnostic methods. Volume
absorption is shown to occur in experiments with laser-irradiated
agar targets. An extended laser energy deposition region filled
with hot (0.8–1 keV) plasma is formed inside a porous
target. The laser light absorption efficiency is as high as ∼80%.
The emission of 2ω0 and 3ω0/2 harmonics
from laser-produced plasma is observed over the time of the laser pulse
even with agar targets of 0.5 mg/cm3 average density.
Characteristics of energy transfer in low-density porous media are
measured in experiments on illumination of agar targets by laser
pulses or X rays emitted by a thin Cu converter. The hydrodynamic
mechanism is responsible for the energy transfer in laser-illuminated
porous targets and the radiative energy transfer seems to be dominant
in the case of X-ray irradiation. The experimental data are in
reasonable agreement with predictions of a developed theoretical model
describing the hot plasma layer formation and the two-stage homogenization
process within the illuminated porous targets.
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