Propagation issues and energetic particle production in laser-plasma interactions at intensities exceeding 10(19)W/cm(2)

Year: 2002

Authors: Borghesi M., Campbell DH., Schiavi A., Willi O., Galimberti M., Gizzi LA., Mackinnon AJ., Snavely RD., Patel P., Hatchett S., Key M., Nazarov W.

Autors Affiliation: Queens Univ Belfast, Dept Pure & Appl Phys, Belfast BT7 1NN, Antrim North Ireland
Univ London Imperial Coll Sci Technol & Med, London SW7 2BZ, England;
CNR, Ist Fis Atom & Mol, I-56100 Pisa, Italy;
Lawrence Livermore Natl Lab, Livermore, CA 94550 USA;
Univ Dundee, Dundee DD1 4HN, Scotland

Abstract: A series of experiments recently carried out at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory investigated various aspects of the laser-plasma interaction in the relativistic intensity regime. The propagation of laser pulses through preformed plasmas was studied at intensities exceeding 10(19) W/cm(2). The transmission of laser energy through long-scale underdense plasmas showed to be inefficient unless a plasma channel is preformed ahead of the main laser pulse. The study of the interaction with overdense plasmas yielded indication of collimated energy transport through the plasma. The production of fast particles during the interaction with solid density targets was also investigated. The measurements revealed the presence of a small-sized directional source of multi-megaelectron volt protons, which was not observed when a plasma was preformed at the back of the solid target. The properties of the source are promising in view of its use in radiographic imaging of dense matter, and preliminary tests were carried out.

Journal/Review: LASER AND PARTICLE BEAMS

Volume: 20 (1)      Pages from: 31  to: 38

KeyWords: laser-plasma interaction; laser-produced ions;; proton; radiography; relativistic propagation;
DOI: 10.1017/S0263034602201044

Citations: 9
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