, Volume 74, Issue 6, pp 509-515

High-order-harmonic generation: towards laser-induced phase-matching control and relativistic effects

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We present a review of some recent results on high-order-harmonic generation, aiming at optimizing the photon flux to allow for future applications in extreme-ultra-violet non-linear optics. We first present new schemes to control phase matching of high harmonics in gases, by using the effect of the spatially varying atomic phase displayed by the high harmonics. An enhancement by a factor of 50 is observed in neon in conditions for which the gradient of the atomic dispersion balances the electronic dispersion. A new scheme to manipulate the laser field was demonstrated, and shown to improve phase matching. We then turn to high-harmonic generation by solid targets, and show that high harmonics generated by an intense 30-fs laser pulse remain collimated even at the threshold of the relativistic regime.

Received: 5 December 2001 / Published online: 24 April 2002