Artemis upgrade and 100 kHz IR OPCPA system
15 Jul 2019



Artemis has moved to new labs and is being upgraded with a 100 kHz IR OPCPA system, in a joint project with Ultra.


​Layout of the new Artemis labs in the Research Complex.

Artemis is undergoing a major upgrade. We are moving the facility across the campus to new, larger, labs in the Research Complex at Harwell, adding a new 100 kHz laser system (a joint purchase with Ultra) and a new XUV beamline.
The new laser will use OPCPA technology to provide mid-infrared femtosecond pulses at 100 kHz repetition rate. For Artemis, the mid-infrared will enable the generation of higher photon energy XUV pulses and the higher repetition rate allows smaller samples to be studied. For Ultra, the appeal is the ability to provide broader spectral coverage at high repetition rates, for faster data acquisition, and more efficient generation of mid- to far-IR pulses.


Artemis has moved to two adjoining labs in the Research Complex at Harwell​ – a multidisciplinary building on the Harwell campus that houses the CLF’s Ultra and Octopus​ facilities. The move doubles Artemis’ floor space. The Research Complex also contains complementary groups and facilities such as the XPS facility, chemical prep labs and the UK Catalys​is Hub. It’s located next to Diamond Light Source.
The smaller of the two labs holds our two laser systems, while the larger lab holds three parallel XUV beamlines, and IR spectroscopy stations for Ultra. A custom-built external plant room holds chillers, cryo-compressors and backing pumps to minimise the noise levels in the lab.

The new Artemis labs, showing the ARPES and AMO end-stations (July 2019).

​100 kHz IR laser

The new laser system is a 100 kHz OPCPA system from Fastlite. The system has several outputs: 170 µJ at 1700 nm and 60 µJ at 3000 nm in < 50 fs pulses at fixed wavelengths for HHG, as well as a rapidly tuneable mode with slightly lower energy, which is more suitable for IR spectroscopy experiments. The laser system is pumped by a 200 W Yb:YAG system from Trumpf Scientific, based on an industrial micro-machining system.​
The existing Artemis 1 kHz RedDragon laser will be upgraded with a third amplifier stage to provide 2 x 8 mJ pulses. This will enable us to offer HHG with second or third harmonic drive in conjunction with tuneable outputs from the Topas OPA system, or to further amplify the output of the OPA or hollow fibre.

The new 100 kHz IR OPCPA system.

New beamlines

A new XUV beamline will be built for the 100 kHz laser system. The time-resolved ARPES experiments will be the first to move to this new beamline.
The coherent lensless imaging beamline will also be extended, to enable longer focal lengths to be used to increase the high harmonic flux.

IR spectroscopy stations

Ultra will develop IR spectroscopy stations, to allow us to initially evaluate the performance of the stable, broadband mid-IR (> 4 µm) output of the new system. As well as the appeal of using such a source for ultrafast IR spectroscopy, the narrowband (~ 20 cm-1) pump laser opens up new opportunities in ultrafast Raman and unique hybrid narrowband/broadband capability, such as surface sum frequency generation and multidimensional spectroscopy techniques (e.g. electronic-vibrational-vibrational).

Current status

Building work in the new labs has now finished, and we are moving in equipment and assembling beamlines and control systems. The 100 kHz laser system is nearing completion in the Fastlite factory. The newly expanded Artemis team​ have completed final user experiments in the old labs, and moved offices into RCaH. We are now working to upgrade the current 1 kHz laser source and end-stations and to design the new 100 kHz HHG source, OPAs and beamline.​ Please get in touch if you are interested in becoming one of our first users and helping with commissioning experiments.

Progress photos

Feb 2019. Building work nearing completion in the new Artemis beamline lab. The optical tables are in place and the overhead gantry is being installed.​

.​Dec 2019. New plant room for the Artemis labs completed. This will hold chillers, cryo-compressors and vacuum pumps for the lasers and beamlines. The Artemis, Ultra and engineering teams are posing with the CLF's electric buggy, used to help move Artemis across the campus.​

Contact: Springate, Emma (STFC,RAL,CLF)