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Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 2006 Sep;74(3 Pt 2):036406. Epub 2006 Sep 27.

Plasma density inside a femtosecond laser filament in air: strong dependence on external focusing.

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  • 1Centre d'Optique, Photonique et Laser and Département de Physique, de Génie Physique et d'Optique, Université Laval, Québec, Canada, G1K 7P4.


Our experiment shows that external focusing strongly influences the plasma density and the diameter of femtosecond Ti-sapphire laser filaments generated in air. The control of plasma filament parameters is suitable for many applications such as remote spectroscopy, laser induced electrical discharge, and femtosecond laser material interactions. The measurements of the filament showed the plasma density increases from 10(15)cm(-3) to 2 x 10(18)cm(-3) when the focal length decreases from 380 cm to 10 cm while the diameter of the plasma column varies from 30 microm to 90 microm. The experimental results are in good qualitative agreement with the results of numerical simulations.

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