U.S. Particle Accelerator School
U.S. Particle Accelerator School
Education in Beam Physics and Accelerator Technology

Laser Physics and Engineering for Accelerator Applications


Michigan State University

Course Name:

Laser Physics and Engineering for Accelerator Applications


Shukui Zhang, Jefferson Lab; Sergio Carbajo, SLAC; and Patrick Inacker, Brookhaven National Lab
TA: Linh Nguyen, Brookhaven National Lab

Purpose and Audience
Lasers have become essential tools widely used in the world of accelerators and particle beams with applications ranging from high quality electron and ion sources, to sophisticated beam diagnostics. This course is an introduction to the basic laser technology, with the focus on applications of the laser techniques in areas of particle accelerators. It is intended for graduate students, engineers and scientists working in the accelerator-related fields who wish to familiarize themselves with advanced laser concepts and technologies. The course is also appropriate for technicians and accelerator operators. 

Undergraduate level Electromagnetism and Optics is required. Basic knowledge of Atomic Physics, and accelerator science and technology at the level of USPAS Fundamentals of Accelerator Physics and Technology with Simulations and Measurements Lab is recommended.

It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that they meet the course prerequisites or have equivalent experience.

The course will focus on the most important concepts and techniques of modern lasers and applications of lasers to accelerators, including laser-particle beam interactions and laser beam and pulse manipulation. Upon completion of this course, the students are expected to understand the basic laser techniques, laser beam interactions, become familiar with use of lasers for beam diagnostics and beam manipulations, and gain useful hands-on experience with laser simulations and lab work.

Instructional Method
This course includes a series of morning and afternoon lectures, including computer simulation practice and lab work. Daily homework assignments will be assigned in the classes and completed outside the scheduled class sessions. The instructors will be available for guidance during evening homework sessions. There will be an open-book final exam on the last day of the course. 

Course Content
Course topics will cover the following two aspects: 

I. Basics of Lasers:

  1. Understanding the basic properties of lasers.
  2. Introduction to non-linear optics (frequency conversion, parametric generation/amplification, Supercontinuum sources).
  3. State of the art lasers and optical devices.
  4. Laser measurement and diagnostics.
  5. Overview of development and trend in laser R&D and the impact on particle accelerators;

II Laser Applications in Accelerators:

  1. Introduction: the need for lasers in accelerator R&D.
  2. Lasers for particle beam sources (electron, ion sources).
  3. Spatial and temporal manipulation (beam/pulse shaping).
  4. Optical-clock and high precision synchronization.
  5. Lasers for particle beam diagnostics (Laser wires, THz/EO sampling techniques, streaking, OTR, etc).
  6. High energy photon sources by laser particle interactions (HHG, X-ray and gamma-ray).
  7. Laser/THz particle acceleration, (inverse) FEL (requiring high quality particle beams).

Reading Requirements
The instructors will provide lecture notes, introductory and review articles, and the USPAS will provide the text:  Anthony Siegman, Lasers (University Science Books, 1986).

Perspective students can prepare for the course in advance by reading references such as:

Credit Requirements
Students will be evaluated based on performance as follows: homework assignments (50% grade), class room participation (20% grade), and final exam (30% grade)

USPAS Computer Requirements
There will be no Computer Lab and all participants are required to bring their own portable computer to access online course notes and computer resources.  This can be a laptop or a tablet with a sufficiently large screen and keyboard. Windows, Mac, and Linux-based systems that are wifi capable and have a standard web browser and mouse are all acceptable.  You should have privileges for software installs. If you are unable to bring a computer, please contact uspas@fnal.gov ASAP to request a laptop loan.  Very limited IT support and spare loaner laptops will be available during the session.

Michigan State University course number:  PHY 905 Section 702, Special Problems
Indiana University course number: Physics 671, Advanced Topics in Accelerator Physics
MIT course number: 8.790, Accelerator Physics