Ionization injection plasma wakefield acceleration
Plasma-based acceleration, either driven by laser (LWFA) or driven by electron beam (PWFA) has the potential of accelerating electrons to GeV in a few cen- timeters. This allows construction of table-top accelerator which can be applied to build light source such as free electron laser (FEL) or high energy particle collider. The driver bunch loses energy to plasma when driving a wake. The following wit- ness bunch injected at correct phase will be accelerated. Here we report a novel injection scheme, laser-ionization injection where the witness bunch is formed by laser-ionizing higher-threshold gas such as He. Simulation and numerical calcula- tion is presented to evaluate the beam quality, the beam emittance is estimated to be 10−8 mrad. Experimental key issues such as timing synchronization of laser pulse and electron bunch and eliminate ”dark current” are taken care of before the plasma acceleration experiment is carried out. Two beams are synchronized to 100-fs level via plasma radiation observation and Electro-Optic Sampling (EOS). ”Dark current” is reduced to trivial level by tuning plasma density and driver bunch configuration. We observed 1 GeV gain of witness bunch with 5% energy spread.