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

A. S. Martynenko, I. Yu Skobelev, S. A. Pikuz*, S. N. Ryazantsev, C. Baird, N. Booth, L. Doehl, P. Durey, D. Farley, R. Kodama, K. Lancaster, P. McKenna, C. Murphy, C. Spindloe, T. A. Pikuz, N. Woolsey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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 × 1020 W/cm2 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.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100924
Early online date27 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

Bibliographical note

© 2021 Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy.

Funding Information:
The study was done under financial support of Russian Foundation for Basic Research (grant# 20-02-00790) and in the frame of the State Assignment to JIHT RAS (topic #075-00892-20-00). The work of UK team received financial support from UK EPSRC grants EP/L01663X/1 and EP/H012605/1 .

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Laser contrast control
  • Plasma diagnostics
  • Relativistic laser plasma
  • Strong field laser physics
  • X-ray emission spectroscopy

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