Necklace-structured high-harmonic generation for low-divergence, soft x-ray harmonic combs with tunable line spacing

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Abstract

The extreme nonlinear optical process of high-harmonic generation (HHG) makes it possible to map the properties of a laser beam onto a radiating electron wave function and, in turn, onto the emitted x-ray light. Bright HHG beams typically emerge from a longitudinal phased distribution of atomic-scale quantum antennae. Here, we form a transverse necklace-shaped phased array of linearly polarized HHG emitters, where orbital angular momentum conservation allows us to tune the line spacing and divergence properties of extreme ultraviolet and soft x-ray high-harmonic combs. The on-axis HHG emission has extremely low divergence, well below that obtained when using Gaussian driving beams, which further decreases with harmonic order. This work provides a new degree of freedom for the design of harmonic combs—particularly in the soft x-ray regime, where very limited options are available. Such harmonic beams can enable more sensitive probes of the fastest correlated charge and spin dynamics in molecules, nanoparticles, and materials.

Year of Publication
2022
Date Published
2022-02
Journal Title
Science Advances
Volume
8
Issue
5
ISSN Number
2375-2548
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