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Title: Simulation of relativistically colliding laser-generated electron flows

Abstract

The plasma dynamics resulting from the simultaneous impact, of two equal, ultra-intense laser pulses, in two spatially separated spots, onto a dense target is studied via particle-in-cell simulations. The simulations show that electrons accelerated to relativistic speeds cross the target and exit at its rear surface. Most energetic electrons are bound to the rear surface by the ambipolar electric field and expand along it. Their current is closed by a return current in the target, and this current configuration generates strong surface magnetic fields. The two electron sheaths collide at the midplane between the laser impact points. The magnetic repulsion between the counter-streaming electron beams separates them along the surface normal direction, before they can thermalize through other beam instabilities. This magnetic repulsion is also the driving mechanism for the beam-Weibel (filamentation) instability, which is thought to be responsible for magnetic field growth close to the internal shocks of gamma-ray burst jets. The relative strength of this repulsion compared to the competing electrostatic interactions, which is evidenced by the simulations, suggests that the filamentation instability can be examined in an experimental setting.

Authors:
 [1];  [2]; ;  [1];  [1];  [3]
  1. Centre for Plasma Physics, School of Mathematics and Physics, Queen's University of Belfast, Belfast BT7 1NN (United Kingdom)
  2. (China)
  3. (Czech Republic)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22068911
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Physics of Plasmas
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 19; Journal Issue: 11; Other Information: (c) 2012 American Institute of Physics; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Journal ID: ISSN 1070-664X
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; COSMIC GAMMA BURSTS; ELECTRIC FIELDS; ELECTROMAGNETIC PULSES; ELECTRON BEAMS; INSTABILITY; INTERACTIONS; LASERS; MAGNETIC FIELDS; PLASMA JETS; PLASMA SHEATH; PLASMA SIMULATION; RELATIVISTIC RANGE; TAIL ELECTRONS

Citation Formats

Yang, X. H., College of Science, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha 410073, Dieckmann, M. E., Sarri, G., Borghesi, M., and Institute of Physics of the ASCR, ELI-Beamlines Project, Na Slovance 2, 18221 Prague. Simulation of relativistically colliding laser-generated electron flows. United States: N. p., 2012. Web. doi:10.1063/1.4768426.
Yang, X. H., College of Science, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha 410073, Dieckmann, M. E., Sarri, G., Borghesi, M., & Institute of Physics of the ASCR, ELI-Beamlines Project, Na Slovance 2, 18221 Prague. Simulation of relativistically colliding laser-generated electron flows. United States. doi:10.1063/1.4768426.
Yang, X. H., College of Science, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha 410073, Dieckmann, M. E., Sarri, G., Borghesi, M., and Institute of Physics of the ASCR, ELI-Beamlines Project, Na Slovance 2, 18221 Prague. Thu . "Simulation of relativistically colliding laser-generated electron flows". United States. doi:10.1063/1.4768426.
@article{osti_22068911,
title = {Simulation of relativistically colliding laser-generated electron flows},
author = {Yang, X. H. and College of Science, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha 410073 and Dieckmann, M. E. and Sarri, G. and Borghesi, M. and Institute of Physics of the ASCR, ELI-Beamlines Project, Na Slovance 2, 18221 Prague},
abstractNote = {The plasma dynamics resulting from the simultaneous impact, of two equal, ultra-intense laser pulses, in two spatially separated spots, onto a dense target is studied via particle-in-cell simulations. The simulations show that electrons accelerated to relativistic speeds cross the target and exit at its rear surface. Most energetic electrons are bound to the rear surface by the ambipolar electric field and expand along it. Their current is closed by a return current in the target, and this current configuration generates strong surface magnetic fields. The two electron sheaths collide at the midplane between the laser impact points. The magnetic repulsion between the counter-streaming electron beams separates them along the surface normal direction, before they can thermalize through other beam instabilities. This magnetic repulsion is also the driving mechanism for the beam-Weibel (filamentation) instability, which is thought to be responsible for magnetic field growth close to the internal shocks of gamma-ray burst jets. The relative strength of this repulsion compared to the competing electrostatic interactions, which is evidenced by the simulations, suggests that the filamentation instability can be examined in an experimental setting.},
doi = {10.1063/1.4768426},
journal = {Physics of Plasmas},
issn = {1070-664X},
number = 11,
volume = 19,
place = {United States},
year = {2012},
month = {11}
}