Publications associated with Plasma Theory


Whole-beam self-focusing in fusion-relevant plasma

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences Royal Society 379 (2020) 20200159

B Spiers, M Hill, C Brown, L Ceurvorst, N Ratan, A Savin, P Allan, E Floyd, J Fyrth, L Hobbs, S James, J Luis, M Ramsay, N Sircombe, J Skidmore, R Aboushelbaya, M Mayr, R Paddock, R Wang, P Norreys

Fast ignition inertial confinement fusion requires the production of a low-density channel in plasma with density scale-lengths of several hundred microns. The channel assists in the propagation of an ultra-intense laser pulse used to generate fast electrons which form a hot spot on the side of pre-compressed fusion fuel. We present a systematic characterisation of an expanding laser-produced plasma using optical interferometry, benchmarked against three-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations. Magnetic fields associated with channel formation are probed using proton radiography, and compared to magnetic field structures generated in fullscale particle-in-cell simulations. We present observations of long lived, straight channels produced by the Habara-Kodama-Tanaka (HKT) wholebeam self-focusing mechanism, overcoming a critical barrier on the path to realising fast ignition.


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