Role of phase instabilities in the early response of bulk fused silica during laser-induced breakdown

P. Demange, R. A. Negres, R. N. Raman, J. D. Colvin, S. G. Demos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


We report on the experimental and hydrocode modeling investigation of the early material response to localized energy deposition via nanosecond laser pulses in bulk fused silica. A time-resolved microscope system was used to acquire transient images with adequate spatial and temporal resolution to resolve the material behavior from the onset of the process. These images revealed a high-pressure shock front propagating at twice the speed of sound at ambient conditions and bounding a region of modified material at delays up to one nanosecond. Hydrocode simulations matching the experimental conditions were also performed and indicated initial pressures of ∼40 GPa and temperatures of ∼1 eV at the absorption region. Both the simulations and the image data show a clear boundary between distinct material phases, a hot plasma and solid silica, with a suggestion that growth of perturbations at the Rayleigh-Taylor unstable interface between the two phases is the seed mechanism for the growth of cracks into the stressed solid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number054118
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 17 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials


Dive into the research topics of 'Role of phase instabilities in the early response of bulk fused silica during laser-induced breakdown'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this