Abstract

We report a high-repetition-rate, compact terawatt Ti:sapphire laser system. The oscillator produces an 82-MHz pulse train consisting of broad-bandwidth pulses of 0.5-nJ/pulse energy and of 9-fs pulse duration. The spectrally shaped, λ/4 regenerative amplifier supports an 80-nm bandwidth. A single 50-Hz repetition-rate pump laser pumps both the regenerative amplifier and a multiple-pass amplifier. The final output from this laser is a 50-Hz pulse train made from pulses of 53 mJ/pulse energy and of 24-fs pulse duration. For generating ultrafast x-ray pulses, 90% of the energy from the final output of a 28-mm-diameter (1/e 2) beam is focused onto an ultrafast x-ray wire target. The energy conversion efficiency from optical (800-nm central wavelength) to x-ray (characteristic lines of K α from Cu at 8 keV) pulses is estimated to be 7 × 10-5. This laser system can also generate a lower-peak-power, dual-pulse output that can excite, simultaneously and coherently, Raman modes within an adjustable bandwidth (up to 700 cm-1) and at a tunable central vibrational frequency. Preliminary results for the generation of dual-pulse output and ultrafast x rays are presented.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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