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Journal Articles Physical Review Letters Year : 2021

Selective Ion Acceleration by Intense Radiation Pressure

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Abstract

We report on the selective acceleration of carbon ions during the interaction of ultrashort, circularly polarized and contrast-enhanced laser pulses, at a peak intensity of 5.5×1020W/cm2, with ultrathin carbon foils. Under optimized conditions, energies per nucleon of the bulk carbon ions reached significantly higher values than the energies of contaminant protons (33MeV/nucleon vs 18 MeV), unlike what is typically observed in laser-foil acceleration experiments. Experimental data, and supporting simulations, emphasize different dominant acceleration mechanisms for the two ion species and highlight an (intensity dependent) optimum thickness for radiation pressure acceleration; it is suggested that the preceding laser energy reaching the target before the main pulse arrives plays a key role in a preferential acceleration of the heavier ion species.
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Dates and versions

hal-03440931 , version 1 (28-10-2022)

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A. Mcilvenny, D. Doria, L. Romagnani, H. Ahmed, N. Booth, et al.. Selective Ion Acceleration by Intense Radiation Pressure. Physical Review Letters, 2021, 127 (19), pp.194801. ⟨10.1103/PhysRevLett.127.194801⟩. ⟨hal-03440931⟩
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