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Generation and transport of fast electrons inside cone targets irradiated by intense laser pulses

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 March 2006

TATSUFUMI NAKAMURA
Affiliation:
Institute of Laser Engineering, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan
HITOSHI SAKAGAMI
Affiliation:
National Institute for Fusion Science, Osaka, Japan
TOMOYUKI JOHZAKI
Affiliation:
Institute of Laser Engineering, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan
HIDEO NAGATOMO
Affiliation:
Institute of Laser Engineering, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan
KUNIOKI MIMA
Affiliation:
Institute of Laser Engineering, Osaka University, Osaka, Japan

Abstract

Fast electrons are effectively generated from solid targets of cone-geometry by irradiating intense laser pulses, which is applied to fast ignition scheme. For realizing optimal core heating by those electrons, understanding the characteristics of electrons emitted from cone targets is crucial. In this paper, in order to understand the generation and transport processes of hot electrons inside the cone target, two-dimensional (2D) particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations were carried out. It is shown that hot electrons form current layers which are guided by self-generated surface magnetic field, which results in effective energy transfer from laser pulse to hot electrons. When the hot electrons propagate through the steep density gradient at the cone tip, electrostatic field is induced via Weibel instability. As a result, hot electrons are confined inside and emitted gradually from the target, as an electron beam of long duration. Energy spectrum and temporal profile of hot electrons are also evaluated at the rear side of the target, where the profile of rear side plasma is taken from the fluid code and the result is sent to Fokker-Planck code.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 2006 Cambridge University Press

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