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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 18, Iss. 25 — Dec. 6, 2010
  • pp: 26007–26017

Tightly focused femtosecond laser pulse in air: from filamentation to breakdown

Xiao-Long Liu, Xin Lu, Xun Liu, Ting-Ting Xi, Feng Liu, Jing-Long Ma, and Jie Zhang  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 18, Issue 25, pp. 26007-26017 (2010)

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The propagation of tightly focused femtosecond laser pulse with numerical aperture of 0.12 in air is investigated experimentally. The formation and evolution of the filament bunch are recorded by time-resolved shadowgraph with laser energy from 2.4 mJ to 47 mJ. The distribution of electron density in breakdown area is retrieved using Nomarski interferometer. It is found that intensity clamping during filamentation effect still play a role even under strong external focusing. The electron density in some interaction zones is higher than 3×1019 cm-3, which indicates that each air molecule there is ionized.

© 2010 OSA

OCIS Codes
(140.3440) Lasers and laser optics : Laser-induced breakdown
(190.5530) Nonlinear optics : Pulse propagation and temporal solitons
(350.5400) Other areas of optics : Plasmas

ToC Category:
Nonlinear Optics

Original Manuscript: September 7, 2010
Revised Manuscript: November 10, 2010
Manuscript Accepted: November 12, 2010
Published: November 30, 2010

Xiao-Long Liu, Xin Lu, Xun Liu, Ting-Ting Xi, Feng Liu, Jing-Long Ma, and Jie Zhang, "Tightly focused femtosecond laser pulse in air: from filamentation to breakdown," Opt. Express 18, 26007-26017 (2010)

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