Relativistic single-cycle tunable infrared pulses generated from a tailored plasma density structure

Zan Nie, Chih Hao Pai, Jianfei Hua, Chaojie Zhang, Yipeng Wu, Yang Wan, Fei Li, Jie Zhang, Zhi Cheng, Qianqian Su, Shuang Liu, Yue Ma, Xiaonan Ning, Yunxiao He, Wei Lu, Hsu Hsin Chu, Jyhpyng Wang, Warren B. Mori, Chan Joshi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


The availability of intense, ultrashort coherent radiation sources in the infrared region of the spectrum is enabling the generation of attosecond X-ray pulses via high-harmonic generation, pump–probe experiments in the ‘molecular fingerprint’ region and opening up the area of relativistic infrared nonlinear optics of plasmas. These applications would benefit from multi-millijoule single-cycle pulses in the mid- to long-wavelength infrared region. Here, we present a new scheme capable of producing tunable relativistically intense, single-cycle infrared pulses from 5 to 14 μm with a 1.7% conversion efficiency based on a photon frequency downshifting scheme that uses a tailored plasma density structure. The carrier-envelope phase of the long-wavelength infrared pulse is locked to that of the drive laser to within a few per cent. Such a versatile tunable infrared source may meet the demands of many cutting-edge applications in strong-field physics and greatly promote their development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)489-494
Number of pages6
JournalNature Photonics
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2018


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