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Proceedings Paper

Parametric investigation of laser wakefield acceleration versus F-number of focusing optics
Author(s): N. Vafaei-Najafabadi; A. Ali; J. A. Chakera; R. Fedosejevs; Y. Y. Tsui
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Paper Abstract

Laser wakefield acceleration is a growing area of research with the promise of generating high energy, low divergence, and short duration electron bunches from tabletop scale accelerators. To date, electron beams with maximum energy of 1 GeV with 2.5% energy spread have been generated using a 3cm plasma channel[1]. However in order to advance the maximum energy of electron beams beyond this limit, better understanding of the physics and effect of different parameters on the interaction are essential. In this paper we report on our parametric studies of wakefield electron acceleration using the 10TW chirped pulse amplified laser system at the Advanced Laser Light Source (ALLS), Montreal. Laser pulses with energies of ~210 mJ at 33fs were focused using a short (f/6) and a long focal length (f/12) off axis parabola onto 2mm supersonic helium and nitrogen gas jets at different pressures. Nitrogen with electron densities of up to 2×1020 cm-3 and helium densities up to 5×1019 were used. Beams with energies of tens of MeV were observed using the short focal length parabola and beams with energies of several MeV were observed using the long focal length parabola. We also found that electron beams are more easily generated with higher levels of prepulse, consistent with previous reports of prepulse generated guiding channels in the plasma[5].

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 August 2009
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 7386, Photonics North 2009, 738638 (4 August 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.839825
Show Author Affiliations
N. Vafaei-Najafabadi, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
A. Ali, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
J. A. Chakera, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
R. Fedosejevs, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
Y. Y. Tsui, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7386:
Photonics North 2009
Réal Vallée, Editor(s)

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