Nonlinear Transport of Multi-Terawatt Mid and Long Wave Ultrashort Electromagnetic Light Bullets Over Kilometer Ranges

Jerome V Moloney
College of Optical Sciences
Arizona Center for Mathematical Sciences
University of Arizona

Thursday, Septemter 21, 2017 at 4:30 PM
Decision Theater


We have identified major paradigm shifts relative to near-IR filamemtation when high power multiple terawatt laser pulses are propagated at mid-IR and long-IR wavelengths within key atmospheric transmission windows. Individual filaments at near-IR (800nm) wavelengths typically persist only over tens of centimeters, despite the whole beam supporting them being sustained over about a Rayleigh range. In the important mid-IR atmospheric window (3.2-4 µm) optical carrier wave self-steepening (carrier shocks) tend to dominate and modify the onset of long range filaments. These shocks generate bursts of higher harmonic dispersive waves that constrain the intensity growth of a filament to well below the traditional ionization limit, making long range low loss propagation possible. For long wave pulses in the 8-12 µm atmospheric transmission window, many electron dephasing collisions from separate gas species acts to dynamically suppress the traditional Kerr self-focusing lens action and leads to a new type of whole beam self-trapping over multiple Rayleigh ranges. This prediction is key as strong linear diffraction at these wavelengths is a major problem and normally requires large launch beam apertures.

I will review our continuing work in this area and will also discuss some recent efforts to extend the HITRAN linear atmospheric transmission/refractive index database to include nonlinear responses of important atmospheric molecular constituents.

ADA: Individuals requiring accommodations, please contact Doreen Taylor at (802) 656-3166


Math Department