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Internal and external laser-induced avalanche breakdown of single droplets in an argon atmosphere

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Abstract

Laser-induced breakdown of a transparent micrometer-sized H2O droplet can be initiated only in the Ar gas in a strip outside the droplet shadow face. At a higher-input 0.532-μm Q-switched laser intensity, breakdown can also occur within the droplet. The resultant internal plasma blocks the laser from reaching the region outside the shadow face and absorbs more of the laser pulse to produce a shock wave and/or a laser-supported detonation wave. Various combinations of liquid and surrounding gas were investigated at different input intensities in order to provide information on the breakdown processes in a transparent droplet.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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