Helmholtz Research Academy Hesse for FAIR

Plasma acceleration

Unconventional acceleration methods

In this project, scientists at the Helmholtz Research Academy Hesse are working on plasma acceleration for FAIR.

The interaction of short laser pulses with dense plasmas has many applications both at GSI and at the future FAIR accelerator with the development of advanced X-ray and particle sources. This type of interaction is characterized by extremely high gradients and ultrashort time scales, which are not yet fully understood and require further studies. 

Here we will focus on ultrafast optical methods to temporally resolve the laser-plasma interaction on the femtosecond and picosecond time scales. A series of experiments will take place at the existing PHELIX facility to test diagnostics and new interaction conditions to study the interaction of relativistic pulses with matter with unprecedented precision.

For applications in laser-driven particle acceleration, GSI's LIGHT beamline is an ideal testbed to study the coupling of laser-accelerated protons and light ions into conventional accelerators. A particularly exciting and unique application is the prospect of demonstrating the coupling of laser-accelerated protons or light ions into the SIS accelerator together with GSI's accelerator department.

Plasma acceleration