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Author ORCID ID is 0000000203017380
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  1. Propagation and scattering of lasers present new phenomena and applications when the plasma medium becomes strongly magnetized. With mega-Gauss magnetic fields, scattering of optical lasers already becomes manifestly anisotropic. Special angles exist where coherent laser scattering is either enhanced or suppressed, as we demonstrate using a cold-fluid model. Consequently, by aiming laser beams at special angles, one may be able to optimize laser-plasma coupling in magnetized implosion experiments. In addition, magnetized scattering can be exploited to improve the performance of plasma-based laser pulse amplifiers. Using the magnetic field as an extra control variable, it is possible to produce optical pulsesmore » of higher intensity, as well as compress UV and soft x-ray pulses beyond the reach of other methods. In even stronger giga-Gauss magnetic fields, laser-plasma interaction enters a relativistic-quantum regime. Using quantum electrodynamics, we compute a modified wave dispersion relation, which enables correct interpretation of Faraday rotation measurements of strong magnetic fields.« less
  2. We show that backward Raman amplification in plasma can efficiently compress a temporally incoherent pump laser into an intense coherent amplified seed pulse, provided that the correlation time of the pump is longer than the inverse plasma frequency. One analytical theory for Raman amplification using pump beams with different correlation functions is developed and compared to numerical calculations and particle-in-cell simulations. Since incoherence on scales shorter than the instability growth time suppresses spontaneous noise amplification, we point out a broad regime where quasi-coherent sources may be used as efficient low-noise Raman amplification pumps. As the amplified seed is coherent, Ramanmore » amplification provides an additional a beam-cleaning mechanism for removing incoherence. At near-infrared wavelengths, finite coherence times as short as 50 fs allow amplification with only minor losses in efficiency.« less
  3. Cited by 10Full Text Available
  4. Here, this tutorial describes mechanisms for separating ions in a plasma device with respect to their atomic or molecular mass for practical applications. The focus here is not on separating isotopes of a single atomic species but rather on systems with a much lower mass resolution and a higher throughput. These separation mechanisms include ion gyro-orbit separation, drift-orbit separation, vacuum arc centrifugation, steady-state rotating plasmas, and several other geometries. Generic physics issues are discussed such as the ion charge state, neutrals and molecules, collisions, radiation loss, and electric fields and fluctuations. Generic technology issues are also discussed such as plasmamore » sources and ion heating, and suggestions are made for future research.« less
  5. A cascaded sequence of photon acceleration stages using the instantaneous creation of a plasma density gradient by flash ionization allows the generation of coherent and chirped ultraviolet and x-ray pulses with independently tunable frequency and bandwidth. The efficiency of the cascaded process scales with 1/ω in energy, and multiple stages produce significant frequency up-conversion with gas-density plasmas. Lastly, chirping permits subsequent pulse compression to few-cycle durations, and output frequencies are not limited to integer harmonics.
    Cited by 1
  6. Here, for hot spots compressed at constant velocity, we give a hydrodynamic stability criterion that describes the expected energy behavior of non-radial hydrodynamic motion for different classes of trajectories (in ρR — T space). For a given compression velocity, this criterion depends on ρR, T, and dT/d(ρR) (the trajectory slope) and applies point-wise so that the expected behavior can be determined instantaneously along the trajectory. Among the classes of trajectories are those where the hydromotion is guaranteed to decrease and those where the hydromotion is bounded by a saturated value. We calculate this saturated value and find the compression velocitiesmore » for which hydromotion may be a substantial fraction of hot-spot energy at burn time. The Lindl “attractor” trajectory is shown to experience non-radial hydrodynamic energy that grows towards this saturated state. Furthermore, comparing the saturation value with the available detailed 3D simulation results, we find that the fluctuating velocities in these simulations reach substantial fractions of the saturated value.« less
  7. In a variety of magnetized plasma geometries, it has long been known that highly charged impurities tend to accumulate in regions of higher density. This “collisional pinch” is modified in the presence of additional forces, such as those might be found in systems with gravity, fast rotation, or non-negligible space charge. In the case of a rotating, cylindrical plasma, there is a regime in which the radially outermost ion species is intermediate in both mass and charge. As a result, this could have implications for fusion devices and plasma mass filters.
  8. Here, we present a simple model for the turbulent kinetic energy behavior of subsonic plasma turbulence undergoing isotropic three-dimensional compression, which may exist in various inertial confinement fusion experiments or astrophysical settings. The plasma viscosity depends on both the temperature and the ionization state, for which many possible scalings with compression are possible. For example, in an adiabatic compression the temperature scales as 1/L 2, with L the linear compression ratio, but if thermal energy loss mechanisms are accounted for, the temperature scaling may be weaker. As such, the viscosity has a wide range of net dependencies on the compression.more » The model presented here, with no parameter changes, agrees well with numerical simulations for a range of these dependencies. This model permits the prediction of the partition of injected energy between thermal and turbulent energy in a compressing plasma.« less
    Cited by 1
  9. A wave-driven rotating torus is a recently proposed fusion concept where the rotational transform is provided by the E × B drift resulting from a minor radial electric field. This field can be produced, for instance, by the RF-wave-mediated extraction of fusion-born alpha particles. In this paper, we discuss how macroscopic force balance, i.e., balance of the thermal hoop force, can be achieved in such a device. We show that this requires the inclusion of a small plasma current and vertical magnetic field and identify the desirable reactor regime through free energy considerations. We then analyze particle orbits in thismore » desirable regime, identifying velocity-space anisotropies in trapped (banana) orbits, resulting from the cancellation of rotational transforms due to the radial electric and poloidal magnetic fields. The potential neoclassical effects of these orbits on the perpendicular conductivity, current drive, and transport are discussed.« less
  10. Large amplitude waves in magnetized plasmas, generated either by external pumps or internal instabilities, can scatter via three-wave interactions. While three-wave scattering is well known in collimated geometry, what happens when waves propagate at angles with one another in magnetized plasmas remains largely unknown, mainly due to the analytical difficulty of this problem. In this study, we overcome this analytical difficulty and find a convenient formula for three-wave coupling coefficient in cold, uniform, magnetized, and collisionless plasmas in the most general geometry. This is achieved by systematically solving the fluid-Maxwell model to second order using a multiscale perturbative expansion. Themore » general formula for the coupling coefficient becomes transparent when we reformulate it as the scattering matrix element of a quantized Lagrangian. Using the quantized Lagrangian, it is possible to bypass the perturbative solution and directly obtain the nonlinear coupling coefficient from the linear response of the plasma. To illustrate how to evaluate the cold coupling coefficient, we give a set of examples where the participating waves are either quasitransverse or quasilongitudinal. In these examples, we determine the angular dependence of three-wave scattering, and demonstrate that backscattering is not necessarily the strongest scattering channel in magnetized plasmas, in contrast to what happens in unmagnetized plasmas. Finally, our approach gives a more complete picture, beyond the simple collimated geometry, of how injected waves can decay in magnetic confinement devices, as well as how lasers can be scattered in magnetized plasma targets.« less

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