Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Abstract-Femtosecond-laser-driven wire-guided helical undulator for intense terahertz radiation
The capability of synchrotron radiation to produce ultrabright emission has attracted considerable interest over the last half a century. To date, magnetic undulators with a period of several centimetres are commonly used for wiggling relativistic electrons in a modulated field. Here, we propose a novel compact undulator with a period down to the submillimetre level based on a spontaneous electric field that is driven by a femtosecond laser. Both the guided energetic electrons and the gyrotron-like undulator are spontaneously produced by irradiating a thin metallic wire with an intense laser pulse. An intense radial electric field instantaneously created on the wire can guide the electrons' helical motion along the wire and induce periodic THz emission. We have demonstrated that this scheme can produce intense THz sources with a conversion efficiency of 1% that are frequency-tunable by adjusting the diameter of the wire. Amplified emission of THz radiation by more than tenfold has been observed.