Attosecond ionization and tunneling delay time measurements in helium

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1126/science.1163439
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TypeArticle
Journal titleScience
ISSN0036-8075
Volume322
Issue5907
Pages15251529; # of pages: 5
AbstractIt is well established that electrons can escape from atoms through tunneling under the influence of strong laser fields, but the timing of the process has been controversial and far too rapid to probe in detail. We used attosecond angular streaking to place an upper limit of 34 attoseconds and an intensity-averaged upper limit of 12 attoseconds on the tunneling delay time in strong field ionization of a helium atom. The ionization field derives from 5.5-femtosecond-long near-infrared laser pulses with peak intensities ranging from 2.3 × 1014 to 3.5 × 1014 watts per square centimeter (corresponding to a Keldysh parameter variation from 1.45 to 1.17, associated with the onset of efficient tunneling). The technique relies on establishing an absolute reference point in the laboratory frame by elliptical polarization of the laser pulse, from which field-induced momentum shifts of the emergent electron can be assigned to a temporal delay on the basis of the known oscillation of the field vector.
Publication date
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNRC Steacie Institute for Molecular Sciences; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number21277099
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Record identifier2a5bc07a-002b-4bcb-b79f-6594e2548971
Record created2015-11-27
Record modified2016-05-09
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