Quantum theory of longitudinal momentum transfer in above-threshold ionization

A. S. Titi
Gordon W. F. Drake, University of Windsor

copyright American Physical Society http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevA.85.041404


In the ionization process, longitudinal momentum along the direction of propagation is transferred to the photoelectrons due to the action of the magnetic component of Lorentz force. In a recent experiment by Smeenk, such a transfer is observed in the ionization of argon and neon atoms by circularly polarized light at 800 and 1400 nm in the intensity range of 1014-1015W/cm2. They accounted for the results by a purely classical model. We present a fully quantum-mechanical calculation of the transfer of longitudinal momentum to the photoelectrons. The results are in agreement with the observations of Smeenk at high intensities, but clear evidence for additional Coulomb interactions emerges at low intensities. © 2012 American Physical Society.