New Paper published in Nature Communications
Left: Laser-driven wakefield accelerator (LWFA) stage with the drive laser propagating to the right shown in red; right: plasma wakefield accelerator (PWFA) driven by the electron beam from the LWFA stage (figure credits: Thomas Heinemann/Strathclyde and Alberto Martinez de la Ossa/DESY).
A team of scientists, led by Prof. Stefan Karsch from LMU Munich and Dr. Arie Irman at HZDR Dresden-Rossendorf, has demonstrated for the first time the acceleration of electrons via a beam of laser-accelerated electrons. This plasma wakefield acceleration offers high field gradients while simulataneously addressing some of the drawbacks of its laser-driven counterpart, laser wakefield acceleration. So far plasma wakefield acceleration was only possible using kilometer-scale RF accelerators, but as shown in the recently published manuscript this acceration scheme can now also be implemented in a compact manner at high-power laser facilities. This hybrid acceleration opens up new possibilities to study plasma acceleration and potentially provide compact, high-brilliance photon sources in the future.
- T. Kurz, T. Heinemann, M. F. Gilljohann, Y. Y. Chang, J. P. Couperus Cabadağ, A. Debus, O. Kononenko, R. Pausch, S. Schöbel, R. W. Assmann, M. Bussmann, H. Ding, J. Götzfried, A. Köhler, G. Raj, S. Schindler, K. Steiniger, O. Zarini, S. Corde, A. Döpp, B. Hidding, S. Karsch, U. Schramm, A. Martinez de la Ossa & A. Irman, "Demonstration of a compact plasma accelerator powered by laser-accelerated electron beams", Nature Communications volume 12, Article number: 2895 (2021)