UPHILL has been using a 20 terawatt (TW) titanium-doped sapphire (Ti:Sa) chirped-pulse-amplified (CPA) laser which can provide 600 millijoules (mJ) of energy over a pulsewidth of 30 femtoseconds (fs), peaked around a central wavelength of 800 nm. Capable of operating at a repetition rate of 10 Hz, this laser can generate peak intensities of 1018 - 1019 W/cm2 on a regular basis when focused to a spot of a few microns by an off-axis parabolic mirror.
The new 100 terawatt (TW) laser at UPHILL is also a titanium-doped sapphire (Ti:Sa) chirped-pulse-amplified (CPA) laser, which promises to provide an energy of about 2.5 joules over a pulsewidth of 25 femtoseconds (fs), peaked around a central wavelength of 800 nm. This laser offers ultrahigh intensity contrast, the picosecond contrast being of the order of 10-10, thereby generating ultraclean pulses at intensities of 1019 - 1020 W/cm2.
Pulsewidth measurement and optimization is obtained using a variety of diagnostics, namely FROG, SPIDER and SEQUOIA. In addition, there is a time-delayed probe line for each of the lasers for routine pump-probe experiments in different configurations. Other typical diagnostics used on a regular basis are electron spectrometers, charge-coupled devices (CCDs) in the visible as well in the infra-red (IR) regime, x-ray CCDs, intensified charge-coupled device cameras (ICCDs), semiconductor and scintillation detectors, single-shot optical spectrometers, Thomson parabola ion spectrometers and time-of-flight mass spectrometers.