Generation of intense, carrier-envelope phase-locked few-cycle laser pulses through filamentation
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- Hauri, C., Kornelis, W., Helbing, F. et al. Appl Phys B (2004) 79: 673. doi:10.1007/s00340-004-1650-z
Intense, well-controlled light pulses with only a few optical cycles start to play a crucial role in many fields of physics, such as attosecond science. We present an extremely simple and robust technique to generate such carrier-envelope offset (CEO) phase locked few-cycle pulses, relying on self-guiding of intense 43-fs, 0.84 mJ optical pulses during propagation in a transparent noble gas. We have demonstrated 5.7-fs, 0.38 mJ pulses with an excellent spatial beam profile and discuss the potential for much shorter pulses. Numerical simulations confirm that filamentation is the mechanism responsible for pulse shortening. The method is widely applicable and much less sensitive to experimental conditions such as beam alignment, input pulse duration or gas pressure as compared to gas-filled hollow fibers.