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Communication: The formation of rarefaction waves in semiconductors after ultrashort excitation probed by grazing incidence ultrafast time-resolved x-ray diffraction
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We explore the InSb-semiconductor lattice dynamics after excitation of high density electron-hole plasma with an ultrashort and intense laser pulse. By using time resolved x-ray diffraction, a sub-mÅ and sub-ps resolution was achieved. Thus, a strain of 4% was measured in a 3 nm thin surface layer 2 ps after excitation. The lattice strain was observed for the first 5 ps as exponentially decaying, changing rapidly by time and by depth. The observed phenomena can only be understood assuming nonlinear time dependent laser absorption where the absorption depth decreases by a factor of twenty compared to linear absorption.
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