Determining the short laser pulse contrast based on X-Ray emission spectroscopy

Martynenko, A.S. and Skobelev, I.Yu. and Pikuz, S.A. and Ryazantsev, S.N. and Baird, C. and Booth, N. and Doehl, L. and Durey, P. and Farley, D. and Kodama, R. and Lancaster, Kate and McKenna, P. and Murphy, C. and Spindloe, C. and Pikuz, T.A. and Woolsey, N. (2021) Determining the short laser pulse contrast based on X-Ray emission spectroscopy. High Energy Density Physics, 38. 100924. ISSN 1574-1818 (

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The interaction of high-power short lasers with solid density targets is an important application of modern solid state lasers. However, uncertainties in measurements due to lack of information on the laser pedestal-to-peak contrast limits the validity of many conclusions. We show that X-ray spectral measurements can provide a straightforward way for accessing the laser pedestal-to-peak contrast. The experiments use silicon targets and relativistic laser intensities of 3 × 10 20 W/cm 2 with a pulse duration of 1 ps. By not using or using a plasma mirror we compare low and high contrast measurements of the Ly-α line and its satellites to show that these lines are an effective laser contrast diagnostic. This diagnostic has potential to reduce uncertainty in future laser-solid interaction studies.


Martynenko, A.S., Skobelev, I.Yu., Pikuz, S.A., Ryazantsev, S.N., Baird, C., Booth, N., Doehl, L., Durey, P., Farley, D., Kodama, R., Lancaster, Kate, McKenna, P. ORCID logoORCID:, Murphy, C., Spindloe, C., Pikuz, T.A. and Woolsey, N.;