Novel method for characterizing relativistic electron beams in a harsh laser-plasma environment

Hidding, B. and Pretzler, G. and Clever, M. and Brandl, F. and Zamponi, F. and Lübcke, A. and Kämpfer, T. and Uschmann, I. and Förster, E. and Schramm, U. and Sauerbrey, R. and Kroupp, E. and Veisz, L. and Schmid, K. and Benavides, S. and Karsch, S. (2007) Novel method for characterizing relativistic electron beams in a harsh laser-plasma environment. Review of Scientific Instruments, 78 (8). 083301. ISSN 1089-7623

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    Particle pulses generated by laser-plasma interaction are characterized by ultrashort duration, high particle density, and sometimes a very strong accompanying electromagnetic pulse (EMP). Therefore, beam diagnostics different from those known from classical particle accelerators such as synchrotrons or linacs are required. Easy to use single-shot techniques are favored, which must be insensitive towards the EMP and associated stray light of all frequencies, taking into account the comparably low repetition rates and which, at the same time, allow for usage in very space-limited environments. Various measurement techniques are discussed here, and a space-saving method to determine several important properties of laser-generated electron bunches simultaneously is presented. The method is based on experimental results of electron-sensitive imaging plate stacks and combines these with Monte Carlo-type ray-tracing calculations, yielding a comprehensive picture of the properties of particle beams. The total charge, the energy spectrum, and the divergence can be derived simultaneously for a single bunch.