The temporal shape of recompressed Ti:sapphire CPA pulses typically contains relatively long pre- and post- pedestals appearing on a picosecond time scale. Despite playing a key role in laser-matter interactions, these artifacts – especially the shape of the leading front of the recompressed pulses – are poorly investigated and understood. The related publications consider picosecond pedestals appearing at both fronts of the main pulse to be related to scattering of the stretched pulse off diffraction gratings inside the stretcher or due to clipping of the pulse spectrum at dielectric coatings. In our experiments we analyzed different types of stretcher-compressor combinations used in Ti:Sapphire laser systems. These include a prism-based stretcher and a bulk compressor, transmission and reflection diffraction gratings - based combinations. We identified pedestals that are typical for the particular stretcher-compressor combination. Especially investigated are those which are coherent with the major recompressed pulse, since with self-phase modulation in power amplifiers they will grow nonlinearly and finally appear symmetric around the major pulse, generating the pre-pedestal from the post-pedestal. Thus, a previously unreported influence of the trailing pedestal has been identified. It is commonly known that recompressed pulses from Ti:sapphire chirped-pulse amplifier systems are accompanied by a slowly decaying ragged post-pedestal. The detailed investigation shows that it consists of numerous pulses with temporal separation in the picosecond range. These are coherent with the main pulse. Moreover, the temporal structure of the trailing pedestal is independent of the particular realization of the Ti:sapphire system and it is present in radiation of any Ti:Sapphire CPA system including Kerr- mode locked master oscillators. Our investigations show that the coherent ragged post-pedestal is the post-radiation of inverted Ti:sapphire medium resulting from phonon-photon interactions.
Mikhail P. Kalashnikov and Nikita Khodakovskiy, "Picosecond temporal contrast of Ti:Sapphire lasers (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10238, High-Power, High-Energy, and High-Intensity Laser Technology III, 102380B (Presented at SPIE Optics + Optoelectronics: April 26, 2017; Published: 9 June 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2264685.5463398588001.
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