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SLAC Publication: SLAC-PUB-16489
SLAC Release Date: March 7, 2016
Enhanced ion acceleration in transition from opaque to transparent plasmas
Mishra, Rohini.
Using particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations, we investigate ion acceleration in the interaction of high intensity lasers with plasmas which transition from opaque to transparent during the interaction process. We show that the highest ion energies are achieved when the laser traverses the target around the peak intensity and re-heats the electron population responsible for the plasma expansion, enhancing the corresponding sheath electric field. This process can lead to an increase of upto 2x in ion... Show Full Abstract
Using particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations, we investigate ion acceleration in the interaction of high intensity lasers with plasmas which transition from opaque to transparent during the interaction process. We show that the highest ion energies are achieved when the laser traverses the target around the peak intensity and re-heats the electron population responsible for the plasma expansion, enhancing the corresponding sheath electric field. This process can lead to an increase of upto 2x in ion energy when compared with the standard Target Normal Sheath Acceleration (TNSA) in opaque targets under the same laser conditions. A theoretical model is developed to predict the optimal target areal density as a function of laser intensity and pulse duration. A systematic parametric scan for a wide range of target density and thickness is performed in 1D and 2D and shown consistent with the theory. These results open the way for a better optimization of the ion energy in future laser-solid experiments. Show Partial Abstract
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  • Interest Categories: General Physics, Other Physics