Investigation of fast electron energy coupling in a counter-propagating scheme

P. Koester, C.A. Cecchetti, L. Labate, L.A. Gizzi, N. Booth, N. Woolsey, H. Chen, Roger Evans, G. Gregori, B. Li, J. Mithen, Ch. Murphy, T. Levato, M. Makita, D. Riley, M. Notley, R. Pattathil

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


A detailed knowledge of the physical phenomena underlying the transport of fast electrons generated in high-intensity laser-matter interactions is of fundamental importance for the fast ignition scheme for inertial confinement fusion. The fast electron currents largely exceed the Alfven limit, therefore a balancing return current is required to support the propagation of the fast electron beam in the target medium. An experimental study aimed at investigating the role of the return current on the dynamics of the fast electron beam was carried out with the Vulcan Petawatt beam. Two counter-propagating electron beams were generated by double-sided irradiation of a layered target containing a 5 micron thick Ti layer. Information on the energy coupling of the fast electron beam to the Ti layer was retrieved through X-ray measurements. In particular, high-resolution X-ray spectroscopy of the Ti emission lines was performed in the spectral range from 4.4 to 5.1 keV including the Lyα, the Heα and the Kα line. Spectra were acquired for double-sided irradiation with different timings between the two laser beams as well as for single-sided irradiation. The recorded spectra indicate a higher target temperature for a precise timing between the two beams in agreement with simulation results.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication38th EPS Conference on Plasma Physics 2011, EPS 2011 - Europhysics Conference Abstracts
Number of pages4
Volume35 2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011

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