Experimental investigation of picosecond dynamics following interactions between laser accelerated protons and water
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article
We report direct experimental measurements with picosecond time resolution of how high energy protons interact with water at extreme dose levels (kGy), delivered in a single pulse with the duration of less than 80 ps. The unique synchronisation possibilities of laser accelerated protons with an optical probe pulse were utilized to investigate the energy deposition of fast protons in water on a time scale down to only a few picoseconds. This was measured using absorbance changes in the water, induced by a population of solvated electrons created in the tracks of the high energy protons. Our results indicate that for sufficiently high doses delivered in short pulses, intertrack effects will affect the yield of solvated electrons. The experimental scheme allows for investigation of the ultrafast mechanisms occurring in proton water radiolysis, an area of physics especially important due to its relevance in biology and for proton therapy.