Propagation of ultrashort resonant ionizing laser pulses in rubidium vapor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We investigate the propagation of ultrashort laser pulses in atomic rubidium vapor. The pulses are intensive enough to ionize the atoms and are directly resonant with the 780-nm D2 line. We derive a relatively simple theory for computing the nonlinear optical response of atoms and investigate the competing effects of strong resonant nonlinearity and ionization in the medium using computer simulations. A nonlinear self-channeling of pulse energy is found to produce a continuous plasma channel with complete ionization. We evaluate the length, width, and homogeneity of the resulting plasma channel for various values of pulse energy and initial focusing to identify regimes optimal for applications in plasma-wave accelerator devices such as that being built by the AWAKE collaboration at CERN. Similarities and differences with laser pulse filamentation in atmospheric gases are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number063423
JournalPhysical Review A
Volume99
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 24 2019

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rubidium
vapors
propagation
pulses
lasers
ionization
plasma waves
homogeneity
atoms
accelerators
computerized simulation
nonlinearity
energy
gases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Cite this

Propagation of ultrashort resonant ionizing laser pulses in rubidium vapor. / Demeter, G.

In: Physical Review A, Vol. 99, No. 6, 063423, 24.06.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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