High-intensity-laser-driven Z pinches

F.N. Beg, E.L. Clark, M.S. Wei, A.E. Dangor, R.G. Evans, A. Gopal, K.L. Lancaster, K.W.D. Ledingham, P. McKenna, P.A. Norreys, M. Tatarakis, M. Zepf, K. Krushelnick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Experiments were performed in which ultrahigh intensity laser pulses (I>5×1019 W cm-2) were used to irradiate thin wire targets. It was observed that such interactions generate a large number of relativistic electrons which escape the target and induce multimega ampere return currents within the wire. MHD instabilities can subsequently be observed in the pinching plasma along with field emission of electrons from nearby objects. Coherent optical transition radiation from adjacent objects was also observed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)095001-1
Number of pages95000
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2004


  • laser pulses
  • electrons
  • pinching plasma
  • plasma
  • lasers


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