Single cycle terawatt twisted light pulses at midinfrared wavelengths above 10μm

Zhu, Xing-Long and Chen, Min and Weng, Su-Ming and McKenna, Paul and Sheng, Zheng-Ming and Zhang, Jie (2019) Single cycle terawatt twisted light pulses at midinfrared wavelengths above 10μm. Physical Review Applied, 12 (5). 054024. ISSN 2331-7043 (

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Twisted light beams with orbital angular momentum provide an additional degree of freedom in controlling light-matter interactions, which are interesting for fundamental and applied research. Although there are various methods that can produce twisted laser beams at sub-micrometer or shorter wavelengths, it is still challenging to extend such beams to mid-infrared (mid-IR) wavelengths with relativistic intensity. Here, we present a promising scheme to generate such pulses converted through frequency downshift of intense driver optical pulses via a plasma-based photon decelerator. The resulting near-single-cycle vortex pulses cover a broad mid-IR spectral range up to 18 μm with energy conversion efficiency of 4.8% (energy ~150mJ) in the wavelength range above 7 μm. This long-wavelength infrared pulses at the terawatt level can be focused to relativistically high intensity, which may offer significant opportunities for high-field physics and ultrafast applications.


Zhu, Xing-Long, Chen, Min, Weng, Su-Ming, McKenna, Paul ORCID logoORCID:, Sheng, Zheng-Ming ORCID logoORCID: and Zhang, Jie;