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Chirped pulse Raman amplification in plasma: high gain measurements

Vieux, G. and Yang, X. and Lyachev, A. and Ersfeld, B. and Farmer, J. and Brunetti, E. and Wiggins, Samuel and Issac, R. and Raj, G. and Jaroszynski, D. A. (2009) Chirped pulse Raman amplification in plasma: high gain measurements. In: Conference on Harnessing Relativistic Plasma Waves as Novel Radiation Sources From Terahertz to X-Rays and Beyond, 2009-04-21 - 2009-04-23.

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Abstract

High power short pulse lasers are usually based on chirped pulse amplification (CPA), where a frequency chirped and temporarily stretched ``seed'' pulse is amplified by a broad-bandwidth solid state medium, which is usually pumped by a monochromatic ``pump'' laser. Here, we demonstrate the feasibility of using chirped pulse Raman amplification (CPRA) as a means of amplifying short pulses in plasma. In this scheme, a short seed pulse is amplified by a stretched and chirped pump pulse through Raman backscattering in a plasma channel. Unlike conventional CPA, each spectral component of the seed is amplified at different longitudinal positions determined by the resonance of the seed, pump and plasma wave, which excites a density echelon that acts as a "chirped'" mirror and simultaneously backscatters and compresses the pump. Experimental evidence shows that it has potential as an ultra-broad bandwidth linear amplifier which dispenses with the need for large compressor gratings.