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Proton acceleration using 50 fs, high intensity ASTRA-Gemini laser pulses

Prasad, R. and Ter-Avetisyan, S. and Doria, D. and Quinn, K. E. and Romagnani, L. and Foster, P. S. and Brenner, C. M. and Green, J. S. and Gallegos, P. and Streeter, M. J. V. and Carroll, D. C. and Tresca, O. and Dover, N. P. and Palmer, C. A. J. and Schreiber, J. and Neely, D. and Najmudind, Z. and McKenna, P. and Zepf, M. and Borghesi, M. (2011) Proton acceleration using 50 fs, high intensity ASTRA-Gemini laser pulses. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment, 653 (1). pp. 113-115. ISSN 0168-9002

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We report on experimental investigations of proton acceleration from thin foil targets irradiated with ultra-short (similar to 50 fs), high contrast (similar to 10(10)) and ultra-intense (up to 10(21) W/cm(2)) laser pulses. These measurements provided for the first time the opportunity to extend the scaling laws for the acceleration process in the ultra-short regime beyond the 10(20) W/cm(2) threshold. The scaling of accelerated proton energies was investigated by varying the thickness of Al targets (down to 50 nm) under 35 angle of laser incidence and with p-polarised light.