Betatron x-ray radiation, driven by electrons from laser-wakefield acceleration, has unique properties to probe high energy density (HED) plasmas and warm dense matter. Betatron radiation is produced when relativistic electrons oscillate in the plasma wake of a laser pulse. Its properties are similar to those of synchrotron radiation, with a 1000 fold shorter pulse. This presentation will focus on the experimental challenges and results related to the development of betatron radiation for x-ray absorption spectroscopy of HED matter at large-scale laser facilities.
A detailed presentation of the source mechanisms and characteristics in the blowout regime of laser-wakefield acceleration will be followed by a description of recent experiments performed at the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS). At LCLS, we have recently commissioned the betatron x-ray source driven by the MEC short pulse laser (1 J, 40 fs). The source is used as a probe for investigating the X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) spectrum at the K- or L-edge of iron and silicon oxide driven to a warm dense matter state (temperature of a few eV and solid densities). The driver is either LCLS itself or an optical laser. These experiments demonstrate the capability to study the electron-ion equilibration mechanisms in warm dense matter with sub-picosecond resolution.
Felicie Albert, "X-ray absorption spectroscopy of warm dense matter with betatron x-ray radiation (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10243, X-ray Lasers and Coherent X-ray Sources: Development and Applications, 102430J (Presented at SPIE Optics + Optoelectronics: April 25, 2017; Published: 16 June 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2268383.5464857851001.
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