Compression of sub two cycle infrared laser pulses with a chunk of glass

Francois Legare, INRS-EMT, University of Quebec

Abstract: High harmonic generation (HHG) is the key process to generate attosecond laser pulses. Recently, sub-100 attosecond pulses have been characterized [1]. To further reduce the duration of the X-ray pulses, CEP (carrier envelope phase) stabilized few-cycle laser pulses in the infrared spectral range are required. A simple and robust scheme for generating 0.4 mJ 11.5 fs pulses at 1.8 Ám is presented [2]. Optical parametric amplified pulses are spectrally broadened in a hollow-core fiber and subsequently compressed by utilizing linear propagation through bulk material. The physical mechanism of the pulse compression scheme will be demonstrated with numerical simulations of nonlinear propagation in the hollow-core fiber. Finally, HHG in noble gas atoms and molecules with this novel source will be reported. [1] E. Goulielmakis et al. Single-cycle nonlinear optics, Science 320, 1614-1617 (2008). [2] B. E. Schmidt et al. Compression of 1.8 Ám laser pulses to sub two optical cycles with bulk material, accepted at App. Phys. Lett. (2010).