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Simulations of efficient Raman amplification into the multipetawatt regime

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Author(s)

R. M. G. M. Trines ; F. Fiuza ; R. Bingham ; R. A. Fonseca ; L. O. Silva ; R. A. Cairns ; P. A. Norreys

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Abstract

Contemporary high-power laser systems make use of solid-state laser technology to reach petawatt pulse powers. The breakdown threshold for optical components in these systems, however, demands metre-scale beams. Raman amplification of laser beams promises a breakthrough by the use of much smaller amplifying media, that is, millimetre-diameter plasmas, but so far only 60 GW peak powers have been obtained in the laboratory, far short of the desired multipetawatt regime. Here we show, through the first large-scale multidimensional particle-in-cell simulations of this process, that multipetawatt peak powers can be reached, but only in a narrow parameter window dictated by the growth of plasma instabilities. Raman amplification promises reduced cost and complexity of intense lasers, enabling much greater access to higher-intensity regimes for scientific and industrial applications. Furthermore, we show that this process scales to short wavelengths, enabling compression of X-ray free-electron laser pulses to attosecond duration.

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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-92
Number of pages6
JournalNature Physics
Volume7
Issue number1
Early online date10 Oct 2010
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2011

Research areas

  • SHORT LASER-PULSES, PLASMA, AMPLIFIERS, BEAMS, BACKSCATTER, SCATTERING, RADIATION, WAVES, CODE, PUMP

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ID: 6030388