12 March 2013 Bistable behavior of a continuous optical discharge as a laser beam propagation effect
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Two stable configurations of a continuous optical discharge (COD) were observed in experiments with plasma sustained continuously in xenon at high pressure by radiation of a medium power CW ytterbium fiber laser. One is the plasmoid of relatively small length with one temperature maximum and laser beam absorption of 10-30%. The other one is the plasma formation stretched along the laser beam with two or three local temperature maxima. The laser beam absorption in the second plasma configuration is increased dramatically up to 70-80% due to increased plasma length. Both plasma shapes were obtained under close conditions, so that oscillations between the two states were possible and also have being observed. The effect was studied and explained on the base of simplified consideration of the laser beam propagation through lens-like plasma medium surrounded by refractive near-spherical bounds between cold and hot gas. Other experimental results on the sustaining conditions of COD and plasma properties are also presented.
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V. P. Zimakov, V. P. Zimakov, V. A. Kuznetsov, V. A. Kuznetsov, A. N. Shemyakin, A. N. Shemyakin, N. G. Solovyov, N. G. Solovyov, A. O. Shilov, A. O. Shilov, M. Yu Yakimov, M. Yu Yakimov, "Bistable behavior of a continuous optical discharge as a laser beam propagation effect", Proc. SPIE 8600, Laser Resonators, Microresonators, and Beam Control XV, 860002 (12 March 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2003658; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2003658


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