The John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science - Bridging Grant

Lead Research Organisation: Imperial College London
Department Name: Dept of Physics

Abstract

The John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science (JAI) is a Centre of Excellence in the UK for advanced and novel accelerator technology, providing expertise, research, development and training in accelerator techniques, and promoting
advanced accelerator applications in science and society.

The JAI, established in 2004, has become an internationally recognised centre for accelerator science. Its vital role in training the next generation of scientists has clearly boosted the UK's impact in this area, helping to address the problem of the worldwide shortage of accelerator scientists. JAI academics, researchers and students have together developed a strong research programme at the forefront of accelerator science, spanning national and international facilities and projects. The JAI has developed, and is actively enhancing, connections with industry and its outreach programme. We are working closely with industrial companies to bring scientific ideas closer to practical applications. Our inspiring and innovative outreach is increasing the desire of younger generations to aspire to technical and scientific careers. These three key elements of the JAI programme, training, accelerator research, and industrial connection and outreach, form the core of our future plans. With Imperial College joining this proposal, the research and training capabilities of the JAI will be significantly strengthened.

In the few years of its history, JAI personnel have already made significant contributions to not only many existing, facilities and experiments both in the UK and abroad, but also proposed projects (from the International Linear Collider (ILC) and Compact Linear Collider (CLIC) for CERN to a Particle Accelerator for Medical Applications (PAMELA), and projects currently being implemented (European Spallation Source, Large Hardron Collider upgrade, SuperB collider in Italy). The JAI has built up expertise in laser-accelerator interactions, design and operation of the brightest electron rings and light sources, machine-detector interface and final-focus systems, handling of proton and muon beams for medical and particlephysics applications, and excellence in advanced beam diagnostics, instrumentation and simulation. In many cases this expertise is unique in the world. The future JAI programme is built upon our expertise and core competences and will include projects of direct relevance to the national accelerator-science strategy, to national facilities such as Diamond and ISIS at Harwell and to the future of particle physics.

The JAI has now initiated work towards new research directions - in particular, we are working towards the creation of a suite of compact light sources, building on our laser-accelerator expertise and bringing us closer to industrial applications, with an aim of achieving commercial devices in the near future. The most challenging, but also the most promising, area is laser-plasma acceleration, and we will address this challenge by combining forces with the plasma physics groups at Oxford and Imperial College, and via developing collaborations with worldwide centres of expertise in this area.

The funding for the JAI in this project will underpin the core elements outlined above. This core staff provision will allow us to explore new opportunities - both in new directions and at the boundaries between synergistic projects - and the early development of new ideas so that dedicated funding can then be secured. This funding will also leverage future investment for both new and established projects, as has been already demonstrated, and ensure that the UK remains a key player in accelerator science and technology worldwide.

This research programme will continue raising the impact of accelerator science on UK's scientific and industrial capabilities and will help to solve the challenges of the 21st century through its applications to healthcare, energy, materials
and biological science.

Planned Impact

The John Adams Institute provides expertise, development and training in accelerator techniques and promotes advanced accelerator applications in science and society. The advanced techniques developed in JAI very often have applications in industry and society, including in healthcare, clean energy and communication technology.

In healthcare, promising new particle beam cancer therapies rely on the development of new, compact accelerators, typically for protons or carbon atoms. This requires the continuation of fundamental research into magnet design, for
example, and redirection of the particle beam. There is also potential impact in healthcare from the novel and control schemes being developed for accelerating and controlling beams of short-lived particles such as muons - via development of novel compact magnets and advanced focusing techniques.

The JAI already has projects in both these areas and seeks to build stronger collaborations with potential beneficiaries. Both society and industry would also benefit from a safe route for generating clean energy. Advances in the accelerator cavities developed for particle physics colliders have opened new opportunities for the creation of inherently safe, accelerator-driven, thorium- based nuclear reactors.

A very wide range of other fields in discovery science benefits from accelerator light sources, such as synchrotrons, with impacts in pharmaceutical, electronics, materials, engineering and medical sciences. The increasing power of such
techniques also drives developments in data analysis and information management. Beyond current light sources, studies of coherent radiation of electron beams have stimulated design of compact THz sources with potential applications in information technology, biology and medical sciences; non-destructive evaluation and other fields. A compact laser-plasma acceleration based X-ray source can significantly increase availability of advanced instruments for science, industry and medicine.

The technologies that underpin the design and operation of accelerator themselves drive developments in industry sectors normally unrelated to accelerators. For example, advances in electronics continue to be required, e.g. for ultrafast feedback and control, and developments in metrology are driven by the need for accurate alignment in future colliders. These developments may be initiated within academic research or through collaboration with industry, but are already resulting in new devices for entirely different markets.

The JAI has an international reputation for training the next generation of accelerator scientists, with wide-ranging skills, and each year provides a significant number of world-class PhDs to industry and national laboratories. This direct transfer of expertise will enable both new and existing accelerator technologies to be developed further and exploited more widely.

Our inspiring and innovative outreach is increasing the desire of younger generations to aspire to technical and scientific careers. By explaining the concepts and technologies behind well-known projects such as the Large Hadron Collider, we can show both the excitement and challenge of science and technology, as well as the many applications of accelerators in wider society.

The impact of research at the JAI on public, schools, industry and government, through 'cross-fertilisation' between academic research and industrial applications, will further enhance in the future as we develop stronger links with industry and the wider public.

Publications

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Albert F (2021) 2020 roadmap on plasma accelerators in New Journal of Physics

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Assmann R (2020) EuPRAXIA Conceptual Design Report in The European Physical Journal Special Topics

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Bloom M (2020) Bright x-ray radiation from plasma bubbles in an evolving laser wakefield accelerator in Physical Review Accelerators and Beams

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Bracco C (2016) AWAKE: A Proton-Driven Plasma Wakefield Acceleration Experiment at CERN in Nuclear and Particle Physics Proceedings

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Caldwell A (2016) Path to AWAKE: Evolution of the concept in Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment

 
Description John Adams Institute - Capital Equipment 2017-19
Amount £42,357 (GBP)
Funding ID ST/P005861/1 
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2017 
End 03/2020
 
Description STFC Imperial John Adams Inst Studentships 2018
Amount £278,370 (GBP)
Funding ID ST/S505833/1 
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2018 
End 09/2022
 
Description The John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science Capital Equipment 2018
Amount £102,982 (GBP)
Funding ID ST/S001956/1 
Organisation Science and Technologies Facilities Council (STFC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2018 
End 09/2019
 
Description ATF BNL 
Organisation Brookhaven National Laboratory
Department Accelerator Test Facility
Country United States 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Experimental proposals and performing collaborative experiments
Collaborator Contribution Access to state of the art infrared laser facility
Impact Two papers in Physical Review Letters, as well as other minor publications
Start Year 2008
 
Description AWAKE-II 
Organisation European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN)
Country Switzerland 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Developing plasma cells for longer length plasmas required for AWAKE-II experiment and developing associated diagnostics.
Collaborator Contribution Preparation of the SPS beam line for the AWAKE experiment. Recent additions include adding a high performance electron injection beamline.
Impact A number of high profile publications have resulted in the AWAKE project though none yet using the new plasma source.
Start Year 2013
 
Description ELI-ALPS 
Organisation ELI Attosecond Light Pulse Source
Country Hungary 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Charged to design the electron beamline for the ultrashort (<10 fs) high rep-rate (kHz) SYLOS laser.
Collaborator Contribution ELI-ALPS has provided funding for the developments and will allow preferential access to their world-leading laser system for the development of this beamline.
Impact Grant awarded by ELI-ALPS for development costs.
Start Year 2017
 
Description EuPRAXIA 
Organisation EuPRAXIA
Country European Union (EU) 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Developing laser wakefield acceleration
Collaborator Contribution Developing applications of wakefield acceleration
Impact NA
Start Year 2016
 
Description Hercules Michigan 
Organisation University of Michigan
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Experiment proposals and collaborative experiments
Collaborator Contribution Access to experimental facilities (Hercules Laser)
Impact Paper in Nature Physics, and Applied Physics Letters
Start Year 2009
 
Description IOQ Jena 
Organisation Friedrich Schiller University Jena (FSU)
Department Institute of Optics and Quantum Electronics (IOQ Jena)
Country Germany 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Proposed & collaborated on an experiment at IOQ Jena
Collaborator Contribution Provided experimental time and access to high power and ultrashort pulse laser facility
Impact Paper in Physical Review Letters
Start Year 2013
 
Description IST AWAKE contribution 
Organisation University of Lisbon
Department Instituto Superior Tecnico
Country Portugal 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We are collaborating with Dr Nelson Lopes to develop a next generation plasma cell for the AWAKE-II run. We have built a prototype in the Blackett Laboratory that will be expanded to 10m to be implemented in CERN. We are also contributing with diagnostics of the cell.
Collaborator Contribution Dr Lopes was instrumental in the building of the cell, in design for the power supply (which uses solid-state switches to be low power) and in pitching the use of the cell to the AWAKE collaboration.
Impact Dr Lopes has obtained seed-corn money from the FCT in Portugal to continue cell development, and we have recently been awarded money in the AWAKE-UK collaboration to build a cell for CERN.
Start Year 2012
 
Description JKaren ion beam generation 
Organisation National Institutes for Quantum and Radiological Science and Technology
Country Japan 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Manned diagnostics on the J-Karen laser system which is a world-leading PW ultrashort laser pulse system, on experiments used for studying ion beam generation with laser beams.
Collaborator Contribution Access to the world-leading J-Karen PW ultrashort laser pulse system, and set-up of the laser system and experiments.
Impact Number of publications under preparation, including measurements of high energy proton beam generation (>50 MeV) in solid foils undergoing relativistic transparency.
Start Year 2017
 
Description MoD DSTL 
Organisation Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (DSTL)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
Start Year 2005
 
Description University of Oxford 
Organisation University of Oxford
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
Start Year 2004
 
Description University of Strathclyde 
Organisation University of Strathclyde
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
Start Year 2004
 
Description "How to make a supernova" exhibit at Royal Society Summer Exhibition 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Shalloo, along with other members of the Clarendon and ICL Plasma, has manned the "How to make a Supernova" exhibit at the Royal Society Summer Exhibition (2017) demonstrating how high intensity laser experiments can create models of extreme astrophysical objects.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://royalsociety.org/science-events-and-lectures/2017/summer-science-exhibition/
 
Description "Laser" exhibit at Great Exhbition Road Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Rob Shalloo, Emma-Jane Ditter (and Nic Gruse) manned an exhibit on "Lasers and Light" that gave visitors the chance to race against each other to align a light path from a laser.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL https://www.greatexhibitionroadfestival.co.uk
 
Description Central Laser Facility Industry Day 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Discussed with industrial users, applications of plasma accelerators
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description School Research Project with Abingdon School 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Steve Rose has run a research project with school students from Abingdon school to analyse the data from the Timepix detectors in the ICL Breit-Wheeler experiment (2019) run by Institute for Research in Schools (IRIS). Steve Rose is a co-founder and trustee of IRIS (http://www.researchinschools.org).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018,2019,2020
URL http://www.researchinschools.org
 
Description Talk to Imperial College PhysSoc 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Undergraduate students
Results and Impact Talked about novel plasma accelerators to undergraduate students, which many reported was the first time they had heard of the concept.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Women in Physics Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Emma-Jane Ditter co-founded and is the current lead of the Women in Physic group at ICL, which aims to empower, support and promote women in physics. They run weekly lunches, semesterly events, and seminars to create a cohort, provide networking opportunities and to make women more visible in the field. The group has grown to around 200 members including undergrads, postgrads, postdoc's and staff. She has raised around £1000 a year from internal and external sources to fund events. Last year she introduced term-time yoga classes for postgraduate and staff as part of the colleges push toward better mental health practices. The group has now transformed from a student lead initiative to a well-established network of staff and Post Docs with full support from the Head of Department and assistance provost
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018,2019,2020
URL https://www.imperial.ac.uk/physics/about/women-in-physics/