Regular Article - Optical Phenomena and Photonics
Conservation laws for electron vortices in strong-field ionisation
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University College London, Gower Street, WC1E 6BT, London, UK
2 Max Born Institute for Nonlinear Optics and Short Pulse Spectroscopy, Max-Born-Straße 2A, 12489, Berlin, Germany
3 ICFO - Institut de Ciencies Fotoniques, The Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology, Av. Carl Friedrich Gauss 3, 08860, Castelldefels (Barcelona), Spain
4 Physics Program, Guangdong Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, 515063, Shantou, Guangdong, China
5 Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, 32000, Haifa, Israel
6 ICREA, Pg. Lluís Companys 23, 08010, Barcelona, Spain
Accepted: 27 April 2021
Published online: 9 July 2021
We investigate twisted electrons with a well-defined orbital angular momentum, which have been ionised via a strong laser field. By formulating a new variant of the well-known strong field approximation, we are able to derive conservation laws for the angular momenta of twisted electrons in the cases of linear and circularly polarised fields. In the case of linear fields, we demonstrate that the orbital angular momentum of the twisted electron is determined by the magnetic quantum number of the initial bound state. The condition for the circular field can be related to the famous ATI peaks, and provides a new interpretation for this fundamental feature of photoelectron spectra. We find the length of the circular pulse to be a vital factor in this selection rule and, employing an effective frequency, we show that the photoelectron OAM emission spectra are sensitive to the parity of the number of laser cycles. This work provides the basic theoretical framework with which to understand the OAM of a photoelectron undergoing strong field ionisation.
© The Author(s) 2021
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