C.H. Moreno, M.C. Marconi, V.N. Shlyaptsev, B.R. Benware, C.D. Macchietto, J.L.A. Chilla, and J.J. Rocca, Electrical Engin. Dept., Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO; A.L. Osterheld, Lawrence Livermore National Lab., Livermore, CA.
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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