|Institution:||University of Michigan|
|Keywords:||Laser Wakefield Acceleration; Synchrotron X-ray Emission; Betatron X-ray Emission; Electron Generation and Acceleration; X-ray Generation; Engineering (General); Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences; Engineering|
|Full text PDF:||http://hdl.handle.net/2027.42/133453|
When a short-pulse, high-intensity laser irradiates a gas target, plasma is produced and electrons are accelerated to high energies due to the electric field of the laser. Irradiation of the gas produces plasma waves capable of accelerating electrons that emit high energy X-rays in the laser wakefield acceleration regime. The properties of the radiation are linked to those of the electron beam and the laser pulse parameters. Thus, efficient X-ray production requires efficient methods of injecting electrons into the wakefield and accelerating them afterwards. This thesis describes experimental and numerical work aimed at optimizing the electron generation process as well as the resulting X-ray emission using low density plasmas. Experiments were primarily carried out using the petawatt-class High Energy Repetitive CUOS LasEr System (HERCULES) at the University of Michigan. Advisors/Committee Members: Krushelnick, Karl M (committee member), Galvanauskas, Almantas (committee member), Maksimchuk, Anatoly M (committee member), Nees, John A (committee member), Thomas, Alexander George Roy (committee member).