Nonuniform discharge currents in active plasma lenses
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevAccelBeams.20.032803
Active plasma lenses have attracted interest in novel accelerator applications due to their ability to provide large-field-gradient (short focal length), tunable, and radially symmetric focusing for charged particle beams. However, if the discharge current is not flowing uniformly as a function of radius, one can expect a radially varying field gradient as well as potential emittance degradation. We have investigated this experimentally for a 1-mm-diameter active plasma lens. The measured near-axis field gradient is approximately 35% larger than expected for a uniform current distribution, and at overfocusing currents ring-shaped electron beams are observed. These observations are explained by simulations.