This work shows for the first time the laser plasma accelerator integrated with a magnet lattice can deliver reliably protons with ideal beam qualities, such as 1% energy spread of different energies and good uniformity. This experiment also demonstrates precise adjustment of the laser accelerated proton beam in terms of energy, charge and diameter with repeatability and availability.
Spread-Out Bragg Peak (SOBP) with three-dimensional radially symmetric dose distribution for cancer therapy, the key technology of proton radiotherapy for malignant tumors, is therefore realized with this laser accelerator for the first time. It raises the “laser acceleration” to “laser accelerator” of ~10 MeV protons through beam control since the invention of laser acceleration in 1979 by Tajima and Dawson.
Bending magnet properly integrated with triplet and doublet quadruple lenses can overcome inherent drawbacks of the laser driven beams. This technology demonstrated in the paper can be also applied to the high energy protons with energy over 250 MeV, resorting to pulsed magnets or superconducting magnets. With the development of high-rep rate PW laser technology, we can now envision a compact beam therapeutic machine of cancer treatment in the near future soon.