Interactions of Laser-Produced Plasmas with Background Gases
A laser-produced plasma (referred to hereafter as a laser-plasma) has such a high initial pressure that its expansion into a background gas produces a variety of interesting interactions. There has been particular interest recently in collision-free ionion interactions (e.g., heating and momentum transfer) between interstreaming plasmas. Such interactions, occurring between the expanding laser-plasma and a background plasma depend on the state of the initial laser-plasma so that a study of these interactions must begin with the laser-plasma. For example, the laser-plasma emits energetic photons which ionize the background gas. We found also, surprisingly, that large magnetic fields can be generated in the laser-plasma.1 These spontaneous magnetic fields are convected outward where they affect interactions with the background plasma. The spontaneous magnetic fields are considered in some detail after discussing interactions between the laser-plasma and background. The discussion is motivated by experimental work being carried on by the authors at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL).
KeywordsLaser Radiation Momentum Transfer Detonation Wave Blast Wave Naval Research Laboratory
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