Abstract

Plasma spectra resulting from the irradiation of single, optically levitated glycerine droplets by an intense pulse from a Nd:YAG laser are presented. The temporal development of the plasma is studied by observing emission lines of neutral and once-ionized carbon and of once-ionized nitrogen. Stark shifts of the neutral-carbon lines are used to compute the plasma electron density. The droplet data are compared with similar data for laser-induced breakdown on a graphite surface.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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