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Modeling single-frequency laser-plasma acceleration using particle-in-cell simulations: the physics of beam breakup

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4 Author(s)
Decker, C.D. ; Lawrence Livermore Nat. Lab., CA, USA ; Mori, W.B. ; Kuo-Cheng Tzeng ; Katsouleas, T.C.

We investigate electron acceleration from space-charge waves driven by single-frequency lasers using a fully explicit particle-in-cell (PIC) model. The two dimensional (2-D) simulations model ~100 fs pulses at densities near n=4×1019 cm-3 for 1-μm lasers. The pulses are found to break up due to a combination of longitudinal and transverse bunching of the laser intensity via Raman forward scattering type instabilities. The ponderomotive force of these intensity modulations generates large amplitude plasma waves. Large numbers of self-trapped electrons and multiple Raman forward scattering satellites are observed. The relevance of these simulations to experiments is discussed

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Plasma Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:24 ,  Issue: 2 )