Temporally Resolved Intensity Contouring (TRIC) for characterization of the absolute spatio-temporal intensity distribution of a relativistic, femtosecond laser pulse.

Affiliation

Lehrstuhl für Medizinphysik, Fakultät für Physik, Ludwig-Maximillians-Universität München, 85748, Garching b. München, Germany. [Email]

Abstract

Today's high-power laser systems are capable of reaching photon intensities up to 1022 W cm-2, generating plasmas when interacting with material. The high intensity and ultrashort laser pulse duration (fs) make direct observation of plasma dynamics a challenging task. In the field of laser-plasma physics and especially for the acceleration of ions, the spatio-temporal intensity distribution is one of the most critical aspects. We describe a novel method based on a single-shot (i.e. single laser pulse) chirped probing scheme, taking nine sequential frames at frame rates up to THz. This technique, to which we refer as temporally resolved intensity contouring (TRIC) enables single-shot measurement of laser-plasma dynamics. Using TRIC, we demonstrate the reconstruction of the complete spatio-temporal intensity distribution of a high-power laser pulse in the focal plane at full pulse energy with sub-picosecond resolution.

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