Rayleigh and Thomson Scattering Diagnostics of Laser Air Sparks: A Testbed for Tailoring Laser Plasmas Conference Paper uri icon


  • A novel light scattering experiment is presented for simultaneous Rayleigh, filtered Rayleigh and Thomson scattering observations of an atmospheric pressure air plasma generated by a 30mJ, 1064nm Nd:YAG laser pulse. The resulting one-dimensional suite of plasma and shockwave measurements are applied toward estimating the conversion efficiency of laser energy into chemical energy, shockwave energy and loss modes during the plasma formation and cooling process. The measurements indicate 6.7mJ (22%) is transmitted past the plasma. Of the absorbed energy, the shockwave contains 9.6mJ (32%) and the plasma contains 5.3mJ (18%) in the form of chemical energy. A comparison with prior literature suggests the unaccounted for remainder of 8.4mJ (28%) can be attributed to blackbody and Bremsstrahlung radiative losses.

name of conference

  • 45th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference

published proceedings

  • 45th AIAA Plasmadynamics and Lasers Conference

author list (cited authors)

  • Limbach, C., & Miles, R. B.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Limbach, Christopher||Miles, Richard B

publication date

  • June 2014