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THz-driven Dielectric Accelerators

(University of Pécs)

This project will study THz-driven Dielectric Accelerators (DLAs) in close collaboration with experts from the Wigner Institute and the University of Liverpool. Secondments to these partner organizations will complement a wide-ranging and interdisciplinary training program that the Fellow will benefit from during their time in the network.

Dielectric Laser Accelerators based on dielectric gratings have proven to achieve loaded gradients exceeding 1 GeV/m. However, these structures are fundamentally limited as for a laser with mm wavelength, the gaps in the dielectric structures need to be a few hundred nm, thereby limiting the charge of the electron bunches to be accelerated.

EuPRAXIA offers a route to generating THz pulses with extremely high field strength and this shows great promise for beam manipulation, including acceleration, bending, spatial or temporal focusing.

According to numerical simulations, it is possible to accelerate a 1.6 pC electron bunch from 1 MeV to 10 MeV by simultaneously compressing it from 100 fs to 2 fs. Using THz pulses rather than near-infrared pulses will enable avenues to exploit the advantages of the 2-3 orders of magnitude longer wavelength and oscillation period of THz pulses. Proof-of-principle measurements demonstrating the acceleration of relativistic electron beams using laser-generated THz pulses were done recently. This project will study acceleration of non-relativistic beams using the Osiris code with the University of Liverpool, working closely with the Wigner Institute on experimental studies.

The Fellow will also have access to the wide-ranging EuPRAXIA-DN training program which will include several international schools and workshops on plasma accelerator science and technology, as well as complementary skills.

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