When the dominant mechanism for ion acceleration is the laser radiation pressure, the conversion efficiency of the laser energy into the energy of relativistic ions may be very high. Stability analysis of a thin plasma layer accelerated by the radiation pressure shows that Raleigh-Taylor instability may enhance plasma inhomogeneity. In the linear stage of instability, the plasma layer decays into separate bunches, which are accelerated by the radiation pressure similarly to clusters accelerated under the action of an electromagnetic wave. The energy and luminosity of an ion beam accelerated in the radiation-pressure-dominated regime are calculated.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
- Condensed Matter Physics