Beam collimation and transport of quasineutral laser-accelerated protons by a solenoid field

Harres, K.; Alber, I.; Tauschwitz, A.; Bagnoud, V.; Daido, H.; Günther, M.; Nürnberg, F.; Otten, A.; Schollmeier, M.; Schütrumpf, J.; Tampo, M.; Roth, M.
February 2010
Physics of Plasmas;Feb2010, Vol. 17 Issue 2, p023107
Academic Journal
This article reports about controlling laser-accelerated proton beams with respect to beam divergence and energy. The particles are captured by a pulsed high field solenoid with a magnetic field strength of 8.6 T directly behind a flat target foil that is irradiated by a high intensity laser pulse. Proton beams with energies around 2.3 MeV and particle numbers of 1012 could be collimated and transported over a distance of more than 300 mm. In contrast to the protons the comoving electrons are strongly deflected by the solenoid field. They propagate at a submillimeter gyroradius around the solenoid’s axis which could be experimentally verified. The originated high flux electron beam produces a high space charge resulting in a stronger focusing of the proton beam than expected by tracking results. Leadoff particle-in-cell simulations show qualitatively that this effect is caused by space charge attraction due to the comoving electrons. The collimation and transport of laser-accelerated protons is the first step to provide these unique beams for further applications such as postacceleration by conventional accelerator structures.


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