Abstract

We discuss various important aspects of the theory of multiphoton free–free transitions. First we show, in the simple framework of potential scattering, the necessity for a description of the laser field to take into account the actual experimental conditions such as beam focusing and pulsed and multimode operations. We then generalize the study to the collisions of fast electrons with atoms in intense laser fields and show how the dressing of the atomic states by the external radiation field can affect the scattering cross sections. Finally, we consider the role played by statistical fluctuations of the laser field. To this end, we develop the pre-Gaussian model of laser noise and show how this formalism can be included in the theory of multiphoton free–free transitions.

© 1990 Optical Society of America

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