Abstract

An experimental and theoretical study has been carried out of the ablation of a solid insulator with a wide band gap (LiF) under the action of ultrashort laser pulses of the UV range, obtained in a free-electron laser (pulse width τ<sub>L</sub>=0.3ps, photon energy ħω<sub>L</sub>=20.2eV), and the soft X-ray region, obtained in a silver-plasma laser (τ<sub>L</sub>=7ps, ħω<sub>L</sub>=89.3eV). A comparison is made of the results obtained on the two laser systems. It is shown that the ablation threshold is about the same for both lasers. A theory is presented that explains the weak growth of the ablation mass with increasing surface energy density of the laser radiation (the fluence) in the case of X-ray lasers as a result of the transition from spallation close to the ablation threshold to evaporative ablation at high fluence values.

© 2011 OSA

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