Dense GeV electron–positron pairs generated by lasers in near-critical-density plasmas

Zhu, Xing-Long and Yu, Tong-Pu and Sheng, Zheng-Ming and Yin, Yan and Turcu, Ion Cristian Edmond and Pukhov, Alexander (2016) Dense GeV electron–positron pairs generated by lasers in near-critical-density plasmas. Nature Communications, 7. 13686. ISSN 2041-1723

[thumbnail of Zhu-etal-NC2016-Dense-GeV-electron-positron-pairs-generated-by-lasers]
Text. Filename: Zhu_etal_NC2016_Dense_GeV_electron_positron_pairs_generated_by_lasers.pdf
Final Published Version
License: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 logo

Download (1MB)| Preview


    Pair production can be triggered by high intensity lasers via the Breit-Wheeler process. However, the straightforward laser-laser colliding for copious numbers of pair creation requires light intensities several orders of magnitude higher than possible with the ongoing laser facilities. Despite the numerous proposed approaches, creating high-energy-density pair plasmas in laboratories is still challenging. Here we present an all-optical scheme for overdense pair production by two counter-propagating lasers irradiating near-critical-density plasmas at only ~1022W cm-2. In this scheme, bright γ-rays are generated by radiation-trapped electrons oscillating in the laser fields. The dense γ-photons then collide with the focused counter-propagating lasers to initiate the multi-photon Breit-Wheeler process. Particle-in-cell simulations indicate that one may generate a high-yield (1.05×1011) overdense (4×1022 cm-3 ) GeV positron beam using 10 PW scale lasers. Such a bright pair source has many practical applications and could be basis for future compact high luminosity electron-positron colliders.

    ORCID iDs

    Zhu, Xing-Long, Yu, Tong-Pu, Sheng, Zheng-Ming ORCID logoORCID:, Yin, Yan, Turcu, Ion Cristian Edmond and Pukhov, Alexander;