The generation of relativistic electrons by nonlinear coupling of a laser beam to an under-dense plasma is simulated. An Eulerian Vlasov code is used, which enables direct solution of the fully nonlinear Vlasov-Maxwell system in real space. The impact of stimulated Raman and Compton scattering on the electron velocity distribution is investigated. Simulations show that electrons can be accelerated to energies of several MeV. The role of induced scattering processes is analyzed in detail, using electromagnetic field spectra and electron phase-space information as diagnostics. The effects of density gradients in the back-ground plasma are also quantified.
- raman scattering
- stimulated compton scattering