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Subfemtosecond pulses

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Abstract

High-harmonic emission is very sensitive to the polarization of a fundamental laser beam. By combining two short perpendicularly polarized pulses with frequencies centered at ω1 and ω2, where (ω1ω2)/ω1 ≪ 1, we can create a pulse with polarization that sweeps from circular through linear back to circular. It is possible to make the duration of the segment of the pulse capable of emitting short-wavelength radiation so small that emission is possible only for a time less than the period of the fundamental.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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