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Proceedings Paper

Applications Of The Free-Electron Laser
Author(s): G. R. Neil; D. Arnush; H. Boehmer; M. Caponi; J. Munch
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Paper Abstract

The free electron laser (FEL) is a source of tunable, high power, coherent light. In the FEL, the sinusoidally varying magnetic field of the wiggler, polarized at right angles to the beam, is backscattered by the beam electrons, resulting in a wave length shortening by a factor of approximately 2γ2 via a double Doppler shift. γ is the relativistic factor. The cross section of the interaction is enhanced by an axial beam bunching, effected by the ponderomotive force of the combined wiggler and scattered E.M. wave fields. Although the efficiency derived to date for high γ has been on the order of .2% (in terms of conversion from electron energy to output radiation), recent theoretical results suggest single pass efficiencies of 5 - 10% are achievable by tapering the magnetic wiggler fields. In this process electrons are trapped in ponderomotive potential wells which are decelerated, transfering the electrons' energy to output radiation. Free electron lasers which operate as both oscillators and amplifiers have been designed on this principle. This technology is potentially useful for a number of DOE programs, in particular, electron heating and inertial confinement fusion, as well as being an interesting scientific tool. The current status of research in the field and requirements for several applications will be discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 September 1981
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 0270, High Power Lasers and Applications, (15 September 1981); doi: 10.1117/12.931740
Show Author Affiliations
G. R. Neil, TRW Defense and Space Systems Group (United States)
D. Arnush, TRW Defense and Space Systems Group (United States)
H. Boehmer, TRW Defense and Space Systems Group (United States)
M. Caponi, TRW Defense and Space Systems Group (United States)
J. Munch, TRW Defense and Space Systems Group (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0270:
High Power Lasers and Applications
Charles C. Tang, Editor(s)

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