, Volume 65, Issue 2, pp 205-211

The ultrahigh-peak-power laser: present and future

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to 1020-W/cm2 range. With some refinements and with superior energy storage materials, even higher peak power in the petawatt range should be possible from tabletop systems. In this paper we show the ultimate achievable power and intensity, as well as their applications in science and technology. Their applications cover a wide variety of fields, such as precision surgery, micromachining, coherent and incoherent X-ray generation, thermonuclear ignition, particle acceleration, and nonlinear quantum electrodynamics.

Received: 5 May 1997/Revised version: 2 June 1997