This invention is a high intensity ultrashort pulse compressor that filters out low intensity artifacts and is made with commercially available low-cost components. This integrated system also provides scalability and can therefore be used for a range of laser intensities.
·High intensity lasers can be used to study fundamental physics.
·Single cycle laser systems that are useful in femtochemistry and X-ray generation can cost more than a million dollars. This could be a cheaper alternative.
·System is made with all “off-the-shelf” components and is cheaper than available commercial systems. Commercial system to double intensity would be ~ 300K, while invention prototype with triple intensity costs < 3K.
·Integrated system of pulse compressor and cleaner, unlike other amplification methods that include multiple stages of pulse amplification/cleaning.
·Scalable depending on the laser intensity (millijoule to multijoule lasers).
Intense laser systems have increasing difficulty shortening the pulse duration and removing low intensity artifacts as the intensity of the beam gets higher. Costly methods exist to remedy each of these issues separately, but there is no way to compensate using a single methodology.
The researchers at the University of California, Irvine, created an integrated system that allows for ultrashort pulse compression and cleaning. This system uses low-cost “off-the-shelf” components and can be[SR1] scaled for a range of laser intensities. The set up includes a laser emitting an ultrashort pulse beam which travels through a telescope, induces non-linear lensing effects and collimates the high intensity output with a filter at the focus to enhance pulse cleaning. This platform is capable of producing >1020 W/cm2, which is the highest demonstrated from a single stage amplifier system.
The system has been built and demonstrated using intense pulses with spatial inhomogeneities, such as Gaussian beams. It is in the process of being used in experiments.