Resonantly enhanced betatron hard x-rays from ionization injected electrons in a laser plasma accelerator

K. Huang, Y. F. Li, D. Z. Li, L. M. Chen, M. Z. Tao, Y. Ma, J. R. Zhao, M. H. Li, M. Chen, M. Mirzaie, N. Hafz, T. Sokollik, Z. M. Sheng, J. Zhang

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Ultrafast betatron x-ray emission from electron oscillations in laser wakefield acceleration (LWFA) has been widely investigated as a promising source. Betatron x-rays are usually produced via self-injected electron beams, which are not controllable and are not optimized for x-ray yields. Here, we present a new method for bright hard x-ray emission via ionization injection from the K-shell electrons of nitrogen into the accelerating bucket. A total photon yield of 8 × 108/shot and 108 photons with energy greater than 110 keV is obtained. The yield is 10 times higher than that achieved with self-injection mode in helium under similar laser parameters. The simulation suggests that ionization-injected electrons are quickly accelerated to the driving laser region and are subsequently driven into betatron resonance. The present scheme enables the single-stage betatron radiation from LWFA to be extended to bright γ-ray radiation, which is beyond the capability of 3rd generation synchrotrons.
Original languageEnglish
Article number27633
Number of pages8
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2016


  • plasma-based accelerators
  • ultrafast photonics
  • x-rays


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