Abstract

High-order harmonic generation in gases by use of femtosecond lasers is a source of ultrashort pulses in the extreme-ultraviolet (XUV). For many applications it is necessary to select radiation of only one specific harmonic order without affecting the duration of the ultrashort pulse. A three-grating monochromator that meets this demand has been designed and modeled by ray tracing as well as by wave-optical simulations. The only remaining temporal stretching of an XUV pulse is due to distortion of the pulse front on the gratings and is predicted to be ∼1 fs. The design has been successfully tested in the near infrared. Finally, the monochromator is also capable of eliminating any existing linear chirp in the harmonic pulses, thus compressing them to shorter durations.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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