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  Plasma photonics at ultra-high intensities

   Department of Physics

  ,  Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

The PhD studentship will support a bold and innovative project to evaluate novel methods of creating robust time-dependent plasma photonic structures by colliding intense laser pulses in plasma or gas. These one, two and three-dimensional Bragg scattering plasma structures and metamaterials will be probed using ultra-short laser pulses. 

The main objective will be to produce andanalyse transient diffractive optical elements for control and manipulation of ultra-intense, ultra-short laser pulses. They will be investigated as pulse-compressors, chirped pulse amplifiers, metamaterials and radiation generators. A novel two-stage modulator inertial bunching process will be investigated as a method for creating plasma structures: an electron plasma structure is formed initially by the ponderomotive force of the beat wave of colliding “pump” pulses. The resulting space-charge force imparts phase-correlated momentum to ions, which inertially “bunch” after a short delay to form a robust plasma structure. Scattering off it leads to diffraction, birefringence, refelction, amplification and other modifications to the properties of the laser pulses. Integrated and comprehensive theoretical studies, applying analytical and numerical methods, will be undertaken.Terawatt to petawatt lasers at the Strathclyde SCAPA facility (, Rutherford Appleton Central Laser Facility and other international facilities will be utilised for the experimental studies. High Performance Computing facilities will be used for numerical simulations using particle-in-cell simulations to model the interactions, and to plan experiments and aid analysis and interpretation of experimental data.

The student will require good experimental skills, particularly in optics and preferably in plasma physics, and have an ability and willingness to undertake numerical simulations. The student will have opportunities to work with international collaborators and using state-of-the-art experimental facilities.

Please contact Prof. Dino Jaroszynski for further information.

Keywords: plasma physics, high power lasers, metamaterials

Physics (29)

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