Two-color interferometer for the study of laser filamentation triggered electric discharges in air

Abstract : We present a space and time resolved interferometric plasma diagnostic for use on plasmas where neutral-bound electron contribution to the refractive index cannot be neglected. By recording simultaneously the plasma optical index at 532 and 1064 nm, we are able to extract independently the neutral and free electron density profiles. We report a phase resolution of 30 mrad, corresponding to a maximum resolution on the order of 4 × 10 22 m −3 for the electron density, and of 10 24 m −3 for the neutral density. The interferometer is demonstrated on centimeter-scale sparks triggered by laser filamentation in air with typical currents of a few tens of A.
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Guillaume Point, Yohann Brelet, Leonid Arantchouk, Jérôme Carbonnel, Bernard Prade, et al.. Two-color interferometer for the study of laser filamentation triggered electric discharges in air. Review of Scientific Instruments, American Institute of Physics, 2014, 85, pp.123101. ⟨10.1063/1.4902533⟩. ⟨hal-01118353⟩

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