Abstract

We report time-averaged and time-resolved emission spectra subsequent to laser-induced optical breakdown of aluminum in laboratory air and in hydrogen gas. The microplasma generated by nominal 10  ns IR laser radiation shows Stark-broadened and shifted atomic lines. An analysis of the Hα and Hβ Balmer series lines and selected aluminum lines allows one to determine electron number density in the range of 0.0110×1018cm3 early in the plasma decay. Atomic and molecular features are investigated for diagnostic applications in laser material processing.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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