Publications by Laura Corner

Low-density hydrodynamic optical-field-ionized plasma channels generated with an axicon lens

Physical Review Accelerators and Beams American Physical Society 22 (2019) 041302-

RJ Shalloo, C Arran, A Picksley, A Von Boetticher, L Corner, J Holloway, G Hine, J Jonnerby, HM Milchberg, C Thornton, R Walczak, S Hooker

We demonstrate optical guiding of high-intensity laser pulses in long, low density hydrodynamic optical-field-ionized (HOFI) plasma channels. An axicon lens is used to generate HOFI plasma channels with on-axis electron densities as low as $n_e(0) = 1.5\times 10^{17}\, \mathrm{cm}^{-3}$ and matched spot sizes in the range $ 20 \mu \mathrm{m} \lesssim W_M \lesssim 40 \mu \mathrm{m}$. Control of these channel parameters via adjustment of the initial cell pressure and the delay after the arrival of the channel-forming pulse is demonstrated. For laser pulses with a peak axial intensity of $4 \times 10^{17}\, \mathrm{W\,cm}^{-2}$, highly reproducible, high-quality guiding over more than 14 Rayleigh ranges is achieved at a pulse repetition rate of 5 Hz, limited by the available channel-forming laser and vacuum pumping system. Plasma channels of this type would seem to be well suited to multi-GeV laser wakefield accelerators operating in the quasi-linear regime.

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