Self-compression of relativistically strong femtosecond laser pulses during the excitation of a plasma wake wave
Institute of Applied Physics RAS - Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
Received: 8 May 2012
Accepted: 12 October 2012
A new concept of the development of plasma compressor for generation of extremely short, relativistically strong femtosecond pulses at a petawatt power level is proposed. The considered compression mechanism is based on the non-stationary self-focusing of a spatially confined wave packet in transparent plasma during the excitation of a plasma wake wave with a period exceeding the laser pulse duration. It is shown that by using appropriately shaped, strong short laser pulses even shorter pulses (with durations up to one optical cycle of the field) can be generated with intensities much greater (>10 times) than the incident pulse with a significant fraction (∼25%) of incident pulse energy.
PACS: 42.65.Re – Ultrafast processes; optical pulse generation and pulse compression / 42.65.Jx – Beam trapping, self-focusing and defocusing; self-phase modulation / 52.35.Mw – Nonlinear phenomena: waves, wave propagation, and other interactions (including parametric effects, mode coupling, ponderomotive effects, etc.)
© EPLA, 2012