Applied Physics B

, Volume 76, Issue 3, pp 231–236

A LIDAR technique to measure the filament length generated by a high-peak power femtosecond laser pulse in air

Authors

  • A. Iwasaki
    • Centre d’Optique, Photonique et Laser (COPL) et Département de Physique, de Génie Physique et d’Optique, Université Laval, Québec, QC, G1K 7P4, Canada
  • N. Aközbek
    • Time Domain Corporation, 7057 Old Madison Pike, Huntsville, AL 35806, USA
  • B. Ferland
    • Centre d’Optique, Photonique et Laser (COPL) et Département de Physique, de Génie Physique et d’Optique, Université Laval, Québec, QC, G1K 7P4, Canada
  • Q. Luo
    • Centre d’Optique, Photonique et Laser (COPL) et Département de Physique, de Génie Physique et d’Optique, Université Laval, Québec, QC, G1K 7P4, Canada
  • G. Roy
    • Sensor Performance Prediction Group of the Defence Research and Development Center-Valcartier (DRDC-Valcartier), Val-Belair, QC, G3J 1X5, Canada
  • C.M. Bowden
    • US Army Aviation and Missile Command, AMRDEC, AMSAM-RD-WS-ST, Redstone Arsenal AL 35898-5000, USA
  • S.L. Chin
    • Centre d’Optique, Photonique et Laser (COPL) et Département de Physique, de Génie Physique et d’Optique, Université Laval, Québec, QC, G1K 7P4, Canada

DOI: 10.1007/s00340-002-1077-3

Cite this article as:
Iwasaki, A., Aközbek, N., Ferland, B. et al. Appl Phys B (2003) 76: 231. doi:10.1007/s00340-002-1077-3

Abstract.

We demonstrate a new method for measuring the length of a femtosecond laser pulse induced filament in air using a LIDAR (LIght Detection And Ranging) technique. The LIDAR involves a detector with a fast response time. The back-scattered multiphoton induced fluorescence from nitrogen molecules excited inside the filament is measured, from which the length of the filament can be determined. We find good agreement between the measured filament length and the length estimated from burn patterns on paper. In addition, good qualitative agreement between the experimental measurement and numerical simulations is obtained for the signal features of the filament. We propose that this new method can be used to quantitatively determine filamentation at longer distances.

PACS: 33.80.-b; 42.68.Ay; 42.68.Wt

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003