Scientific article
Open access

Dynamics of the femtosecond laser-triggered spark gap

Published inOptics Express, vol. 28, no. 17, 24599
Publication date2020

We present space and time resolved measurements of the air hydrodynamics inducedby femtosecond laser pulse excitation of the air gap between two electrodes at high potential difference. We explore both plasma-based and plasma-free gap excitation. The former uses the plasma left in the wake of femtosecond filamentation, while the latter exploits air heating by multiple-pulse resonant excitation of quantum molecular wavepackets. We find that the cumulative electrode-driven air density depression channel plays the dominant role in the gap evolution leading to breakdown. Femtosecond laser heating serves mainly to initiate the depression channel; the presence of filament plasma only augments the early heating.

  • Laser
  • Femtoseconde
  • Filament
  • Filamentation
  • Décharge
Research group
Citation (ISO format)
ROSENTHAL, E. W. et al. Dynamics of the femtosecond laser-triggered spark gap. In: Optics Express, 2020, vol. 28, n° 17, p. 24599. doi: 10.1364/OE.398836
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal1094-4087

Technical informations

Creation08/10/2020 10:32:00 AM
First validation08/10/2020 10:32:00 AM
Update time03/15/2023 10:23:51 PM
Status update03/15/2023 10:23:51 PM
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