Ion energy increase in laser-generated plasma expanding through axial magnetic field trap

L. Torrisi*, D. Margarone, S. Gammino, L. Ando

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Laser-generated plasma is obtained in high vacuum (10-7 mbar) by irradiation of metallic targets (Al, Cu, Ta) with laser beam with intensities of the order of 1010 W/cm2. An Nd: Yag laser operating at 1064 nm wavelength, 9 ns pulse width, and 500 mJ maximum pulse energy is used. Time of flight measurements of ion emission along the direction normal to the target surface were performed with an ion collector. Measurements with and without a 0.1 Tesla magnetic field, directed along the normal to the target surface, have been taken for different target-detector distances and for increasing laser pulse intensity. Results have demonstrated, that the magnetic field configuration creates an electron trap in front of the target surface along the axial direction. Electric fields inside the trap induce ion acceleration; the presence of electron bundles not only focuses the ion beam but also increases its energy, mean charge state and current. The explanation of this phenomenon can. be found in the electric field modification inside the non-equilibrium plasma because of an electron bunching that increases the number of electron-ion interactions. The magnetic field, in fact, modifies the electric field due to the charge separation between the clouds of fast electrons, many of which remain trapped in the magnetic hole, and slow ions, ejected from the ablated target; moreover it increases the number of electron-ion interactions producing higher charge states.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453-464
Number of pages12
JournalLaser And Particle Beams
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2007
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Electron trapping
  • Laser-generated plasma
  • Plasma in magnetic field

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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