The direct observation and full characterization of a phase space electron hole (EH) generated during laser-matter interaction is presented. This structure, propagating in a tenuous, nonmagnetized plasma, has been detected via proton radiography during the irradiation with a ns laser pulse (I?2 ˜ 1014 W/cm2) of a gold hohlraum. This technique has allowed the simultaneous detection of propagation velocity, potential, and electron density spatial profile across the EH with fine spatial and temporal resolution allowing a detailed comparison with theoretical and numerical models.
Bibliographical noteFunding for this research has been provided by the AWE Academic Access Scheme, EPSRC Grant Nos. EP/E035728/1 and EP/C003586/1, by DFG TR 18, GK 1203, and FOR 1048 VR. The work of I.K. was supported by EPSRC-GB Science and Innovation award in Plasma Physics to the Centre for Plasma Physics (Grant No. EP/D06337X/1). The authors acknowledge the support of the HELEN Facility laser and target preparation personnel and K. Quinn for fruitful discussions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Condensed Matter Physics