OSA's Digital Library

Journal of the Optical Society of America B

Journal of the Optical Society of America B


  • Vol. 21, Iss. 7 — Jul. 1, 2004
  • pp: 1391–1396

Generation of high-energy electrons by a femtosecond terawatt laser propagating through a sharp downward density transition

Hyyong Suk, Hae June Lee, and In Soo Ko  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA B, Vol. 21, Issue 7, pp. 1391-1396 (2004)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (585 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



We demonstrate by computer simulations the generation of high-energy electrons by using a femtosecond terawatt laser pulse propagating in a plasma with a sharp downward density transition. In the two-dimensional simulation, a 20-TW laser pulse with a pulse duration of 60 fs and a wavelength of 800 nm propagates through a plasma with a sharp density transition consisting of n0I=5×1018 cm-3 and n0II=0.75n0I. The simulation result demonstrates that a significant amount of electrons can be self-trapped and accelerated to an energy of 117 MeV over a distance of 0.62 mm by the ultrastrong nonlinear laser wake field. In addition, it has been found that the trapping dynamics is much different from the electron-beam-driven dynamics and that the energy spread of the trapped electrons can be reduced significantly by use of the density tapering method.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(190.7110) Nonlinear optics : Ultrafast nonlinear optics
(350.4990) Other areas of optics : Particles
(350.5400) Other areas of optics : Plasmas

Hyyong Suk, Hae June Lee, and In Soo Ko, "Generation of high-energy electrons by a femtosecond terawatt laser propagating through a sharp downward density transition," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 21, 1391-1396 (2004)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. M. D. Perry and G. Mourou, “Terawatt to petawatt subsecond lasers,” Science 264, 917–924 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  2. D. Umstadter, “Review of physics and applications of relativistic plasmas driven by ultra-intense lasers,” Phys. Plasmas 8, 1774–1785 (2001). [CrossRef]
  3. T. Tajima and J. M. Dawson, “Laser electron accelerator,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 43, 267–270 (1979). [CrossRef]
  4. L. M. Gorbunov and V. I. Kirsanov, “Excitation of plasma waves by an electromagnetic wave packet,” Zh. Eksp. Teor. Fiz. 93, 509–518 (1987).
  5. P. Sprangle, E. Esarey, J. Krall, and G. Joyce, “Propagation and guiding of intense laser pulses in plasmas,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 69, 2200–2203 (1992). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. K. Nakajima, D. Fisher, T. Kawakubo, H. Nakanishi, A. Ogata, Y. Kato, Y. Kitagawa, R. Kodama, K. Miwa, H. Shiraga, K. Suzuki, K. Yamakawa, T. Zhang, Y. Sakawa, T. Shoji, Y. Nishida, N. Yugami, M. Downer, and T. Tajima, “Observation of ultrahigh gradient electron acceleration by a self-modulated intense short laser pulse,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 74, 4428–4431 (1995). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. D. Umstadter, J. Kim, and E. Dodd, “Laser injection of ultrashort electron pulses into wakefield plasma waves,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 76, 2073–2076 (1996). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  8. E. Esarey, R. F. Hubbard, W. P. Leemans, A. Ting, and P. Sprangle, “Electron injection into plasma wake fields by colliding laser pulses,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 79, 2682–2685 (1997). [CrossRef]
  9. S. Bulanov, N. Naumova, F. Pegoraro, and J. Sakai, “Particle injection into the wave acceleration phase due to nonlinear wake wavebreaking,” Phys. Rev. E 58, R5257–R5261 (1998). [CrossRef]
  10. H. Suk, N. Barov, J. B. Rosenzweig, and E. Esarey, “Plasma electron trapping and acceleration in a plasma wake field using a density transition,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 86, 1011–1014 (2001). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  11. D. Strickland and G. Mourou, “Compression of amplified chirped optical pulses,” Opt. Commun. 56, 219–221 (1985). [CrossRef]
  12. R. G. Hemker, K. C. Tzeng, W. B. Mori, C. E. Clayton, and T. Katsouleas, “Computer simulations of cathodeless high-brightness electron-beam production by multiple laser beams in plasmas,” Phys. Rev. E 57, 5920–5928 (1998). [CrossRef]
  13. B. Goplen, L. Ludeking, D. Smithe, and G. Warren, “User-configurable MAGIC for electromagnetic PIC calculations,” Comput. Phys. Commun. 87, 54–86 (1995). [CrossRef]
  14. J. B. Rosenzweig, D. B. Cline, B. Cole, H. Figueroa, W. Gai, R. Konecny, J. Norem, P. Schoessow, and J. Simpson, “Experimental observation of plasma wakefield acceleration,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 61, 98–101 (1988). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  15. A. Ogata, “Plasma lens and wake experiments in Japan,” in Proceedings of the AIP Workshop on Advanced Accelerator Concepts, AIP Conf. Proc. 279, 420–449 (1993). [CrossRef]
  16. C. E. Clayton, B. E. Blue, E. S. Dodd, C. Joshi, K. A. Marsh, W. B. Mori, S. Wang, P. Catravas, S. Chattopadhyah, E. Esarey, W. P. Leemans, R. Assmann, F. J. Decker, M. J. Hogan, R. Iverson, P. Raimondi, R. H. Siemann, D. Walz, T. Katsouleas, S. Lee, and P. Muggli, “Transverse envelope dynamics of a 28.5-GeV electron beam in a long plasma,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 88, 154801 (2002). [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited