2.1 Laser Plasma Dynamics and Particle Acceleration
Project coordinator(s): M. Schnürer

Project Goals

Investigation of laser driven ion and electron acceleration

!!! Research on relativistic laser plasma dynamics and the related project 2.1 will be completed at MBI in 2016. Last experiments have been performed until July 2016 and rebuilding of the former High Field Laser Laboratory - the experimental platform for 2.1 - started in August 2016 !!!

The website provides an overview about some achievements during the past years.

The project aimed on detailed study of energy transfer processes in relativistic plasmas which are accompanied by strong fields. These fields account for laser acceleration of charged particles which can be pursued for new technologies in pulsed electron and ion beam generation. Optimization of ion and electron acceleration comprises the two topics of the project. Exploration of different regimes of the laser acceleration process is one objective. Utilization of the laser radiation pressure is a main direction in ion and proton acceleration. Electron acceleration as a second research topic started in 2012. The necessary infrastructure - a special lab with radiation enclosure and two laser arms at 100 TW pulse power - has been erected in parallel (cf. 4.2).Generally, development of acceleration schemes for stable electron beam parameters is a key issue for new brilliant x-ray sources and electron accelerators. Definite ion beam parameter are a prerequisite in "proton imaging" which is applied as a diagnostic tool for ultra-strong field phenomena in relativistic plasmas.

Fast Gold - Coulomb driven energy boost in laser - heavy ion acceleration

Dependence of maximum ion energy (pink squares)  on its ionization energy - as the experiment with laser (1.3J @ 35 fs) irradiated 14 nm thick gold foils delivered.  Good agreement has been found with the 2D - PIC simulation - blue squares and with the prediction of our new theoretical model- blue line in contrast to the established old model - black line. Inserted Foto (dispersed ions in a Thomson mass spectrometer and recorded with an imaging micro channel plate)   shows characteristic distribution of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen from contamination layer and up to 50 different ionization states of gold ions emerging from the irradiated thin foil.


Key Publications