Abstract

New data are reported on the multiphoton detachment process in a fast beam of H ions. The angle-tuned relativistic Doppler shift is used to vary the photon energy of a focused (~10 GW/cm2) 10.6-μm CO2 laser beam from ~0.05 to ~0.4 eV in the rest frame (CM frame) of the fast ions. The ions are produced at 800 MeV (β = v/c = 0.84) by the Los Alamos Meson Physics Facility linear accelerator at Los Alamos and experience ~1-psec pulses in the CM frame as they cross the laser beam focus. Peaks in the detachment signal corresponding to each order for two- to six-photon processes are observed. At modest laser intensity in the gigawatt-per-square-centimeter range, observed shifts of the apparent two-photon threshold are found to be not more than 30–50% of the expected maximum shift, based on the value of the ponderomotive potential. Experimental uncertainties are due mainly to imprecise knowledge of the maximum laser intensity. The data analysis and modeling of the expected threshold shape experiments are continuing.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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