Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2015

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors



First Advisor

Andreas Becker

Second Advisor

Agnieszka Jaron-Becker


With appropriate filters, high harmonic generation (HHG) can produce X-ray pulses on the attosecond time scale. We formulate a procedure to minimize pulse duration in various energy regimes and predict photoionization rates for a number of noble gases. Bridging the gap between the theory of high harmonic generation and the experimental reality, we seek to support the production of tabletop X-ray sources able to probe electron dynamics in inner shells. This thesis builds on the work of other researchers in the Ultrafast AMO Theory group, including a novel analytic fitting to noble gas potentials, and predictions of the energy spectrum and phases obtained by high harmonic generation. Specifically, computational methods (including Crank-Nicolson) and the single active electron model allow for the solution of the time-dependent Schrödinger equation and calculation of photoionization probabilities, while numerical Fourier transforms enable rapid analysis of filtered HHG spectra.