Two-dimensional Near-field and Far-field Imaging of a Ne-like Ar Capillary Discharge Table-top Soft X-ray Laser

The observation of large soft X-ray amplification in the plasma of a capillary discharge and the subsequent demonstration of a saturated discharge pumped table-top soft X-ray laser in Ne-like Ar at 46.9 nm has established a new approach for the development of compact and practical soft X-ray lasers. In these lasers the gain medium is a hot and dense plasma column with aspect ratios approaching 1000:1, generated in a capillary channel by a fast discharge current pulse where lasing is obtained by collisional electron excitation of Ne-like ions. Knowledge of the near- and far-field spatial distribution of the output of these lasers is of both practical and basic interest.

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