In this work we report on a study of the plasma produced by UV (lambda = 351 nm) laser ablation of an aluminum target. In particular, we have directly measured the flux velocity of ablated ions along the normal to the metal target, the corresponding ion temperature, and the average kinetic energy by using an electrostatic energy analyzer. Moreover, by interpreting the measured ion energy distributions within the framework of the hydrodynamical model, we have also inferred an estimate of plasma electron density and temperature, which provide significant information on the laser plasma characterization in a number of applications.
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