Relativistically Self-Guided Laser-Wakefield Acceleration
Since the concept of laser-plasma acceleration was introduced in 1979,1 laser technology has rapidly progressed to an extent2,3 that these accelerators have been demonstrated in many laboratories throughout the world. There is significant interest in these accelerators because of the incredible accelerating gradients of plasma waves, which have been measured to be four orders of magnitudes greater than conventional technologies (E≥ 200 GV/m).4 One of the many applications these accelerators may have is the ability to create extremely short pulses of x-ray radiation on a small scale, table-top synchrotrons, that are synchronized with the laser. We have created a low-emittance beam of relativistic electrons (ε < 1 π mm mrad) with over 1 nC of total charge in a picosecond bunch.5.6 Our most recent work has shown that we can accelerate electrons beyond the previous limit of natural diffraction, and therefore more fully exploit the incredible accelerating fields. In this paper, we will review the current state of our experimental self-modulated laser-plasma accelerator.
KeywordsLaser Power Plasma Wave Critical Power Plasma Channel Laser Power Increase
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