Ionization Induced Trapping in a Laser Wakefield Accelerator

McGuffey, C. and Thomas, A. G. R. and Schumaker, W. and Matsuoka, T. and Chvykov, V. and Dollar, F. J. and Kalintchenko, G. and Yanovsky, V. and Maksimchuk, A. and Krushelnick, K. and Bychenkov, V. Yu. and Glazyrin, I. V. and Karpeev, A. V. (2010) Ionization Induced Trapping in a Laser Wakefield Accelerator. Physical review letters, 104 (2). ISSN 0031-9007

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Experimental studies of electrons produced in a laser wakefield accelerator indicate trapping initiated by ionization of target gas atoms. Targets composed of helium and controlled amounts of various gases were found to increase the beam charge by as much as an order of magnitude compared to pure helium at the same electron density and decrease the beam divergence from 5: 1 +/- 1: 0 to 2: 9 +/- 0: 8 mrad. The measurements are supported by particle-in-cell modeling including ionization. This mechanism should allow generation of electron beams with lower emittance and higher charge than in preionized gas.

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Journal Article
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Physical review letters
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11 Nov 2016 14:04
Last Modified:
17 Sep 2023 01:58