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The gas avalanche switch is a laser-activated, high-voltage switch, consisting of a set of pulse-charged electrodes in a high-pressure gas.1-4Induced electrons from a picosecond-scale laser pulse initiate an avalanche discharge between high-voltage and grounded electrodes. If the voltage, pressure, and dimensions are correct, the rapid avalanche, fueled by the immense number of electrons available in the gas, collapses the applied voltage in picoseconds and generates electromagnetic pulses with widths as short as 1-10 ps and 3 dB bandwidths of 20-120 GHz. With proper voltage or pressure detuning, wider pulses and lower bandwidths occur. In addition to picosecond electromagnetic pulse generation, application of this switch should result in ultra-fast Marx bank pulsers5.