Extremely intense laser beams penetrating into a plasma are focused because of the dependence of the index of refraction on the relativistic electron mass. Under the assumptions of a collision-free plasma and circularly polarized laser radiation, we calculate the focus length by using the WKB approximation. The resulting analytical formulas are applied to the case of a neodymium:glass laser.
© 1988 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: January 13, 1988
Manuscript Accepted: May 16, 1988
Published: October 1, 1988
Thomas Häuser, Heinrich Hora, and Werner Scheid, "Analytical calculation of relativistic self-focusing length in the WKB approximation," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 5, 2029-2034 (1988)