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Extreme ionization of gold atoms

Gold atoms are stripped of 72 of their electrons to form nitrogen-like Au72+ ions inside extremely hot plasmas by irradiating gold foils and nanowires with highly relativistic femtosecond laser pulses.

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Fig. 1: Highly relativistic, high-contrast second-harmonic laser pulses and a high critical electron density make it possible to deposit laser energy deep inside a gold target, thereby generating highly ionized atoms.


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Correspondence to Lap Van Dao or Peter Hannaford.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Van Dao, L., Hannaford, P. Extreme ionization of gold atoms. Nat. Photonics 14, 598–599 (2020).

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