Scheme of the experimental setup: (1) delay line, (2) lens to focus the pump beam, (3) target, (4) imaging of focal spot (via flipping mirror, dashed line), (5) lateral alignment, imaging, and camera, (6) CCD to record interferograms/shadowgrams, and (7) shutter.
Plasma expansion at four different delays: (a) 0 ps, (b) 43 ps, (c) 67 ps, and (d) 90 ps.
Two-dimensional map of plasma expansion at [Fig. 3(c)]; (a) phase map from the interferogram and (b) density map after Abel inversion (green line represents the isodensity contour at ).
Electron temperature and electron density from the hydrodynamic simulation at . Dotted line is the unperturbed target boundary; laser is coming from the right.
Electron density on the symmetry axis vs distance from target at three different times: (upper) 20 and 60 ps, (lower) 80 ps. Simulated profiles are added for comparison. Dotted vertical line is the unperturbed target boundary; laser is coming from the right.
Propagation of a constant density front ; the solid line represents the extrapolation from simulated data; crosses are experimental data.
Temporal evolution of the plasma profile: (a) the dotted line represents the propagation of the critical density front (, for ); the continuous line represents the gradient length (evaluated between and ) and (b) propagation of the shock wave in the bulk material (0 marks the position of the target surface before interaction).
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