Abstract

We present the results of a diagnostic study of the use of coherent four wave mixing for in situ measurement of an electric field in air or in nitrogen-containing plasmas. Static electric fields in air at a nominal pressure of 625Torr and temperature of 300K are detected using vibrational CARS of nitrogen. It is shown that the ratio of the infrared signal to the vibrational N2 CARS signal is equal to approximately 108 at 8.33kV/cm, a factor of approximately 50 less than that predicted assuming equal third-order nonlinear susceptibilities. It is also shown that the spatial resolution of a typical collinear geometry measurement is approximately 1cm. Finally, it is shown that achieving sensitivities of the order of 1kV/cm requires that the coherent Raman pumping be performed in the highly saturated and Stark broadened regime.

© 2011 Optical Society of America

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