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Phys Rev Lett. 2011 Mar 25;106(12):123901. Epub 2011 Mar 23.

Revealing local field structure of focused ultrashort pulses.

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Laser Physics Center, Research School of Physics and Engineering, Australian National University, Canberra ACT 0200, Australia.


We utilize the interaction of tightly focused ultrashort pulses with transparent media to imprint their local polarization in the focal region. In particular, we demonstrate that this technique allows for a subwavelength resolution diagnostic of complex polarization states including the presence of the longitudinal component of the electric field. Moreover, we demonstrate the first ever material ablation with the longitudinal electric field of femtosecond pulses.

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