Extreme Physics driven by High Intensity Laser Plasma

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

Abstract

The student will contribute to the experimental and data analysis aspects of the TeX-MeX project which aims to study extreme conditions using laser wakefield accelerators. Experiments will use laser wakefield accelerators to generate high energy electron beams that can be used to probe extreme conditions.
The student's work will mostly contribute to the following work packages:
WP1: Hot Dense matter This concerns the study of matter at or above solid density heated to temperatures in excess of 100 eV. Experiments will take the form of time resolved X-ray absorption spectroscopy using the X-rays produced by a laser wakefield acceleration to probe a heated sample (via fast electron heating).
WP2: Warm Dense Matter
This concerns the study of matter at or above solid density heated to temperatures at temperatures around 1 10 eV. High resolution X-ray absorption spectroscopy will be employed to study the behaviour of this exotic state of matter.
WP3: Extreme Photon densities. This concerns the study of extreme photon densities: for example, in high density X-ray fields, or extremely high-density laser fields electron positron pairs can be produced.
Experiments will take place at the CLF in the UK and other international laser facilities, to be determined, but likely to include Hercules at the University of Michigan, the MEC at LCLS and the BELLA facility at LBNL.

Publications

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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ST/S505833/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2023
2351615 Studentship ST/S505833/1 01/10/2018 23/12/2022 Eva LOS
 
Title Inference of electron beam chirp using Bayesian Statistics 
Description Given a model for the interaction between an electron bunch and a counter-propagating laser, allows the chirp of the electron beam and other parameters governing the collision to be inferred 
Type Of Material Data analysis technique 
Year Produced 2021 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Writing up results for publication 
 
Title Radiation Reaction Dataset 
Description Measurements of the energy loss of electrons when interacting with a counter-propagating high-power laser, and the gamma radiation emitted by the electrons. The aim of this experiment was to differentiate between different models of radiation reaction (e.g. classical, semi-classical, QED) by comparing the predictions each of these models make regarding the energy loss of the electrons, and the energy spectrum of the gamma radiation they emit, to the experimental data. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2018 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Papers in preparation, an improved version of this experiment is due to start in 2021. 
 
Title X-ray Absoption Spectroscopy Dataset 
Description Time-resolved spectroscopic measurements of cold and heated/partially melted copper taken at the k-edge. Data also contains time-resolved information on the electronic and ionic structure and temperature of the copper as it is heated. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2020 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Several papers in preparation 
 
Description BELLA, LBNL 
Organisation Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Country United States 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Collaborated on an experiment at the BELLA Laser lab at LBNL. Experimental goals: use betatron radiation from a laser-driven wakefield accelerator to image a laser-driven shock in a (high repetition rate) water jet.
Collaborator Contribution Training of and knowledge sharing with our team members
Impact Upcoming experiment (post-poned due to COVID) in which we aim to fully realise experimental goals of the last experiment, which were partially fulfilled.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Queen's University Belfast 
Organisation Queen's University Belfast
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaborating on an experiment at the Central Laser Facility at Rutherford Appleton Laboratories
Collaborator Contribution Helped to set up the experiment and take data. Involved in preliminary data analysis.
Impact Dataset taken, papers hopefully to come.
Start Year 2020
 
Description SLAC 
Organisation Stanford University
Department SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory
Country United States 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Collaborated on an experiment at the Matter in Extreme conditions department at SLAC.
Collaborator Contribution Helped to set up the experiment and take data. Also involved with data analysis.
Impact Papers in preparation.
Start Year 2019