We present the results of simulations of the propagation of high-intensity laser pulses in discharge-ablated capillary waveguides. The limitations of this type of waveguide for pulse intensities of the order of 10<sup>16</sup> W cm<sup>−2</sup> are discussed. However, for higher intensities we describe a new regime of quasi-matched guiding, that results in significant improvements in guiding performance. The effect on quasi-matched guiding of changing the atomic numbers of the atoms that compose the plasma waveguide is discussed. Calculations are presented for boron capillaries that show quasi-matched guiding over lengths of 32 mm for an input intensity of 5×10<sup>17</sup> W cm<sup>−2</sup>.
© 2000 Optical Society of America
(000.4430) General : Numerical approximation and analysis
(140.7240) Lasers and laser optics : UV, EUV, and X-ray lasers
(230.7370) Optical devices : Waveguides
(350.5400) Other areas of optics : Plasmas
D. J. Spence and S. M. Hooker, "Simulations of the propagation of high-intensity laser pulses in discharge-ablated capillary waveguides," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 17, 1565-1570 (2000)