Abstract

The results of a feasibility study of ablatively accelerating small particles to extremely high velocities using focused laser radiation are reported. The effects of particle size, melt, and breakup due to shear and compressive and centrifugal forces as well as particle stability in the beam are included. Ultimate velocities are limited by available laser sources, but velocities exceeding 107 cm/sec appear possible. The conversion efficiency of laser energy into particle kinetic energy may exceed 10%.

© 1986 Optical Society of America

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