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Abstract: In laser-plasma interactions it is widely accepted that a non-uniforminteraction surface will invariably seed hydrodynamic instabilities and agrowth in the amplitude of the initial modulation. Recent experimental resultsDromey, Nat. Phys. 2009 have demonstrated that there must be target smoothingin femtosecond timescale relativistic interactions, contrary to prevailingexpectation. In this paper we develop a theoretical description of the physicalprocess that underlies this novel phenomena. We show that the surface dynamicsin the few-cycle relativistic regime is dominated by the coherent electronmotion resulting in a smoothing of the electron surface. This stabilization ofplasma surfaces is unique in laser-plasma interactions and demonstrates thatdynamics in the few-cycle regime differ fundamentally from the longer pulseregimes. This has important consequences for applications such as radiationpressure acceleration of protons and ions and harmonic generation fromrelativistically oscillating surfaces.



Author: S.G. Rykovanov, H. Ruhl, J. Meyer-ter-Vehn, R. Hoerlein, B. Dromey, M. Zepf, G.D. Tsakiris

Source: https://arxiv.org/







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