High intensity particle physics at PW-lasers

Stepan BulanovLawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

April 1, 2016, 2:00 - 3:00pm, SERF 383


Abstract:  Nowadays with the fast growth of laser technology the lasers provide one of the most powerful sources of electromagnetic (EM) radiation under laboratory conditions. It was already demonstrated that the intensity of 2x10^22 W/cm^2 could be achieved with the present day technology. Currently available PW-class lasers, such as BELLA facility at LBNL, can in principle be focused down to 10^23 W/cm^2. There are projects to generate pulses with intensity up to 10^25-26 W/cm^2. Such laser systems can be used to accelerate ions to relativistic energies, generate sources of high frequency coherent radiation, model the processes typical for relativistic astrophysics, study the interaction of particles with EM fields in the radiation dominated and quantum regimes, which completely change the nature of interaction, and, maybe, probe the properties of the vacuum. The latter two processes being from the domain of nonlinear quantum electrodynamics (nQED). In this sense the high intensity laser pulses allow for the study of the unexplored regime of interaction of charged particles with radiation. In my presentation I'll review the above mentioned areas of research and identify the parameters, which the PW-lasers need to reach to be able to study these phenomena.


Bio:  Stepan Bulanov is a research scientist at BELLA center, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. His research interests include laser-matter interaction at relativistic intensities, nonlinear QED, and laser ion and electron acceleration. He is mainly working on the ion acceleration from relativistically strong laser pulse interactions with solid and near critical density targets and its applications for radiation therapy. Another area of active research is the study of nonlinear Quantum Electrodynamics (QED) processes, which take place in ultra-strong electromagnetic fields in vacuum and plasma. Stepan Bulanov holds a PhD in physics and mathematics from Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Moscow, Russia.

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