Propagation instabilities of high-intensity laser-produced electron beams

M. Tatarakis, F.N. Beg, E.L. Clark, A.E. Dangor, R.D. Edwards, R.G. Evans, T.J. Goldsack, K.W.D. Ledingham, P.A. Norreys, M.A. Sinclair, M.S. Wei, M. Zepf, K. Krushelnick

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Abstract

Measurements of energetic electron beams generated from ultrahigh intensity laser interactions (I>1019 W/cm2) with dense plasmas are discussed. These interactions have been shown to produce very directional beams, although with a broad energy spectrum. In the regime where the beam density approaches the density of the background plasma, we show that these beams are unstable to filamentation and 'hosing' instabilities. Particle-in-cell simulations also indicate the development of such instabilities. This is a regime of particular interest for inertial confinement fusion applications of these beams (i.e., "fast ignition").
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175001-1
Number of pages175000
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume90
Issue number17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003

Keywords

  • electron beams
  • lasers
  • plasma
  • fusion

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