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Characterization of High-Temperature Laser-Produced Plasmas Using Thomson Scattering

Description: Ultraviolet Thomson scattering has been fielded at the Omega Laser Facility to achieve accurate measurements of the plasma conditions in laser-produced high-temperature plasmas. Recent applications to hohlraum targets that have been filled with CH gas or SiO{sub 2} foams have demonstrated a new high temperature plasma regime of importance to laser-plasma interaction studies in a strongly damped regime such as those occurring in indirect drive inertial confinement fusion experiments. The Thomson scattering spectra show the collective ion acoustic features that fit the theory for two ion species plasmas and from which we infer the electron and ion temperature. We find that the electron temperature scales from 2-4 keV when increasing the heater beam energy into the hohlraum from 8-17 kJ, respectively. Simultaneous measurements of the stimulated Raman scattering from a green 527 nm interaction beam show that the reflectivity decreases from 20% to 1% indicating that this instability is strongly damped at high temperatures. These findings support green laser beams as possible driver option for laser-driven fusion experiments.
Date: September 16, 2005
Creator: Glenzer, S H; Froula, D H; Ross, S; Niemann, C; Meezan, N & Divol, L
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Temporal Dispersion of a Spectrometer

Description: The temporal dispersion of an optical spectrometer has been characterized for a variety of conditions related to optical diagnostics to be fielded at the National Ignition Facility (e.g., Full-Aperture Backscatter Station, Thomson Scattering). Significant time smear is introduced into these systems by the path length difference through the spectrometer. The temporal resolution can be calculated to depend only on the order of the grating, wavelength, and the number of grooves illuminated. To enhance the temporal dispersion, the spectral gratings can be masked limiting the number of grooves illuminated. Experiments have been conducted to verify these calculations. The size and shape of masks are investigated and correlated to the exact shape of the temporal instrument function, which is required when interpreting temporally resolved data. The experiments used a 300fs laser pulse and a picosecond optical streak camera to determine the temporal dispersion. This was done for multiple spectral orders, gratings, and optical masks.
Date: May 8, 2008
Creator: Visco, A; Drake, R P; Froula, D H & Glenzer, S H
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Predictive three dimensional modeling of Stimulated Brillouin Scattering in ignition-scale experiments

Description: The first three-dimensional (3D) simulations of a high power 0.351 {micro}m laser beam propagating through a high temperature hohlraum plasma are reported. We show that 3D linear kinetic modeling of Stimulated Brillouin scattering reproduces quantitatively the experimental measurements, provided it is coupled to detailed hydrodynamics simulation and a realistic description of the laser beam from its millimeter-size envelop down to the micron scale speckles. These simulations accurately predict the strong reduction of SBS measured when polarization smoothing is used.
Date: November 7, 2007
Creator: Divol, L; Berger, R; Meezan, N; Froula, D H; Dixit, S; Suter, L et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Examination of scattering volume aligment in Thomson scattering off of a shock front in argon

Description: Thomson scattering in argon gas successfully probed the region of plasma just behind the shock front. The instantaneous shock velocity can be inferred from the duration of the signal, taking into account the size and shape of the scattering volume. Possible misalignment of the probe beam and spectrometer slits greatly affects the size and shape of the scattering volume, and therefore affects the calculation of the instantaneous shock velocity.
Date: July 26, 2007
Creator: Reighard, A B; Froula, D H; Drake, R P; Ross, J S & Divol, L
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Three dimensional modeling of Laser-Plasma interaction: benchmarking our predictive modeling tools vs. experiments

Description: We have developed a new target platform to study Laser Plasma Interaction in ignition-relevant condition at the Omega laser facility (LLE/Rochester)[1]. By shooting an interaction beam along the axis of a gas-filled hohlraum heated by up to 17 kJ of heater beam energy, we were able to create a millimeter-scale underdense uniform plasma at electron temperatures above 3 keV. Extensive Thomson scattering measurements allowed us to benchmark our hydrodynamic simulations performed with HYDRA[2]. As a result of this effort, we can use with much confidence these simulations as input parameters for our LPI simulation code pF3d[3]. In this paper, we show that by using accurate hydrodynamic profiles and full three-dimensional simulations including a realistic modeling of the laser intensity pattern generated by various smoothing options, whole beam three-dimensional linear kinetic modeling of stimulated Brillouin scattering reproduces quantitatively the experimental measurements(SBS thresholds, reflectivity values and the absence of measurable SRS). This good agreement was made possible by the recent increase in computing power routinely available for such simulations. These simulations accurately predicted the strong reduction of SBS measured when polarization smoothing is used.
Date: November 8, 2007
Creator: Divol, L; Berger, R; Meezan, N; Froula, D H; Dixit, S; Suter, L et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Thomson scattering techniques in laser produced plasmas

Description: Thomson scattering has been shown to be a valuable technique for measuring the plasma conditions in laser produced plasmas. Measurement techniques are discussed that use the ion-acoustic frequency measured from the collective Thomson-scattering spectrum to extract the electron temperature, ion temperature, plasma flow, and electron density in a laser produced plasma. In a recent study, they demonstrated a novel Thomson-scattering technique to measure the dispersion of ion-acoustic fluctuations that employing multiple color Thomson-scattering diagnostics. They obtained frequency-resolved Thomson-scattering spectra of the two separate thermal ion-acoustic fluctuations with significantly different wave vectors. This new technique allows a simultaneous time resolved local measurement of electron density and temperature. The plasma fluctuations are shown to become dispersive with increasing electron temperature. Furthermore, a Thomson-scattering technique to measure the electron temperature profile is presented where recent experiments have measured a large electron temperature gradient (Te = 1.4 keV to Te = 3.2 keV over 1.5-mm) along the axis of a 2-mm long hohlraum when heated asymmetrically.
Date: May 4, 2006
Creator: Froula, D H; Ross, J S; Divol, L; MacKinnon, A J; Sorce, C & Glenzer, S H
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Local Measurement of Electron Density and Temperature in High Temperature Laser Plasma Using the Ion-Acoustic Dispersion

Description: The dispersion of ion-acoustic fluctuations has been measured using a novel technique that employs multiple color Thomson-scattering diagnostics to measure the frequency spectrum for two separate thermal ion-acoustic fluctuations with significantly different wave vectors. The plasma fluctuations are shown to become dispersive with increasing electron temperature. We demonstrate that this technique allows a time resolved local measurement of electron density and temperature in inertial confinement fusion plasmas.
Date: September 20, 2005
Creator: Froula, D H; Davis, P; Ross, S; Meezan, N; Divol, L; Price, D et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Laser-plasma interaction in ignition relevant plasmas: benchmarking our 3D modelling capabilities versus recent experiments

Description: We have developed a new target platform to study Laser Plasma Interaction in ignition-relevant condition at the Omega laser facility (LLE/Rochester)[1]. By shooting an interaction beam along the axis of a gas-filled hohlraum heated by up to 17 kJ of heater beam energy, we were able to create a millimeter-scale underdense uniform plasma at electron temperatures above 3 keV. Extensive Thomson scattering measurements allowed us to benchmark our hydrodynamic simulations performed with HYDRA [1]. As a result of this effort, we can use with much confidence these simulations as input parameters for our LPI simulation code pF3d [2]. In this paper, we show that by using accurate hydrodynamic profiles and full three-dimensional simulations including a realistic modeling of the laser intensity pattern generated by various smoothing options, fluid LPI theory reproduces the SBS thresholds and absolute reflectivity values and the absence of measurable SRS. This good agreement was made possible by the recent increase in computing power routinely available for such simulations.
Date: September 27, 2007
Creator: Divol, L; Froula, D H; Meezan, N; Berger, R; London, R A; Michel, P et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Laboratory observation of secondary shock formation ahead of a strongly radiative blast wave

Description: High Mach number blast waves were created by focusing a laser pulse on a solid pin, surrounded by nitrogen or xenon gas. In xenon, the initial shock is strongly radiative, sending out a supersonic radiative heat wave far ahead of itself. The shock propagates into the heated gas, diminishing in strength as it goes. The radiative heat wave also slows, and when its Mach number drops to 2 with respect to the downstream plasma, the heat wave drives a second shock ahead of itself to satisfy mass and momentum conservation in the heat wave reference frame; the heat wave becomes subsonic behind the second shock. For some time both shocks are observed simultaneously. Eventually the initial shock dimimishes in strength so much that it can longer be observed, but the second shock continues to propagate long after this time. This sequence of events is a new phenomenon that has not previously been discussed in literature. Numerical simulation clarifies the origin of the second shock, and its position is consistent with an analytical estimate.
Date: November 16, 2005
Creator: Hansen, J F; Edwards, M J; Froula, D H; Gregori, G; Edens, A & Ditmire, T
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Laboratory observation of secondary shock formation ahead of a strongly radiative blast wave

Description: We have previously reported the experimental discovery of a second shock forming ahead of a radiative shock propagating in Xe. The initial shock is spherical, radiative, with a high Mach number, and it sends a supersonic radiative heat far ahead of itself. The heat wave rapidly slows to a transonic regime and when its Mach number drops to two with respect to the downstream plasma, the heat wave drives a second shock ahead of itself to satisfy mass and momentum conservation in the heat wave reference frame. We now show experimental data from a range of mixtures of Xe and N{sub 2}, gradually changing the properties of the initial shock and the environment into which the shock moves and radiates (the radiative conductivity and the heat capacity). We have successfully observed second shock formation over the entire range from 100% Xe mass fraction to 100% N{sub 2}. The formation radius of the second shock as a function of Xe mass fraction is consistent with an analytical estimate.
Date: April 20, 2006
Creator: Hansen, J F; Edwards, M J; Froula, D H; Edens, A D; Gregori, G & Ditmire, T R
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Stimulated Brillouin Scattering from Helium-Hydrogen Plasmas

Description: An extensive study of the stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) in helium-hydrogen plasmas has been performed using a gas jet at the Janus Laser Facility. We observe three regions of reflectivity by varying the probe intensity from 10{sup 14} to 10{sup 16}: saturated region, linear region, and near SBS threshold region. In the linear regime, adding small amounts of H to a He plasma reduces the SBS reflectivity by a factor of 4.
Date: August 22, 2003
Creator: Froula, D H; Divol, L; Price, D; Gregori, G; Williams, E A & Glenzer, S H
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Observation of relativistic effects in collective Thomson scattering

Description: We observe relativistic modifications to the Thomson scattering spectrum in a traditionally classical regime: v{sub osc}/c = eE{sub 0}/cm{omega}{sub 0} << 1 and T{sub e} < 1 keV. The modifications result from scattering off electron-plasma fluctuations with relativistic phase velocities. Normalized phase velocities v/c between 0.03 and 0.12 have been achieved in a N{sub 2} gas-jet plasma by varying the plasma density from 3 x 10{sup 18} cm{sup -3} to 7 x 10{sup 19} cm{sup -3} and electron temperature between 85 eV and 700 eV. For these conditions, the complete temporally resolved Thomson scattering spectrum including the electron and ion features has been measured. A fully relativistic treatment of the Thomson scattering form factor has been developed and shows excellent agreement with the experimental data.
Date: October 8, 2009
Creator: Ross, J S; Glenzer, S H; Palastro, J P; Pollock, B B; Price, D; Divol, L et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Green (2(omega)) Laser Beam propagation in high-temperature Hohlraum Plasmas

Description: We demonstrate propagation and small backscatter losses of a frequency-doubled (2{omega}) laser beam interacting with inertial confinement fusion hohlraum plasmas. The electron temperature of 3.3 keV, approximately a factor of two higher than achieved in previous experiments with open geometry targets, approaches plasma conditions of high-fusion yield hohlraums. In this new temperature regime, we measure 2{omega} laser beam transmission approaching 80% with simultaneous backscattering losses of less than 10%. These findings suggests that good laser coupling into fusion hohlraums using 2{omega} light is possible.
Date: October 26, 2007
Creator: Niemann, C; Berger, R; Divol, L; Froula, D H; Jones, O S; Kirkwood, R K et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A pulsed-laser calibration system for the laser backscatter diagnostics at the Omega laser

Description: A calibration system has been developed that allows a direct determination of the sensitivity of the laser backscatter diagnostics at the Omega laser. A motorized mirror at the target location redirects individual pulses of a mJ-class laser onto the diagnostic to allow the in-situ measurement of the local point response of the backscatter diagnostics. Featuring dual wavelength capability at the 2nd and 3rd harmonic of the Nd:YAG laser, both spectral channels of the backscatter diagnostics can be directly calibrated. In addition, channel cross-talk and polarization sensitivity can be determined. The calibration system has been employed repeatedly over the last two years and has enabled precise backscatter measurements of both stimulated Brillouin scattering and stimulated Raman scattering in gas-filled hohlraum targets that emulate conditions relevant to those in inertial confinement fusion targets.
Date: April 29, 2008
Creator: Neumayer, P; Sorce, C; Froula, D H; Rekow, V; Loughman, K; Knight, R et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Experimental basis for laser-plasma interactions in ignition hohlraums at the National Ignition Facility

Description: A series of laser plasma interaction experiments at OMEGA (LLE, Rochester) using gas-filled hohlraums shed light on the behavior of stimulated Raman scattering and stimulated Brillouin scattering at various plasma conditions encountered in indirect drive ignition designs. We present detailed experimental results that quantify the density, temperature, and intensity thresholds for both of these instabilities. In addition to controlling plasma parameters, the National Ignition Campaign relies on optical beam smoothing techniques to mitigate backscatter. We show that polarization smoothing is effective at controlling backscatter. These results provide an experimental basis for forthcoming experiments on National Ignition Facility.
Date: November 12, 2009
Creator: Froula, D H; Divol, L; London, R A; Berger, R L; Doeppner, T; Meezan, N B et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

High Magnetic field generation for laser-plasma experiments

Description: An electromagnetic solenoid was developed to study the effect of magnetic fields on electron thermal transport in laser plasmas. The solenoid, which is driven by a pulsed power system suppling 30 kJ, achieves magnetic fields of 13 T. The field strength was measured on the solenoid axis with a magnetic probe and optical Zeeman splitting. The measurements agree well with analytical estimates. A method for optimizing the solenoid design to achieve magnetic fields exceeding 20 T is presented.
Date: May 1, 2006
Creator: Pollock, B B; Froula, D H; Davis, P F; Ross, J S; Fulkerson, S; Bower, J et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Measurement of the dispersion of thermal ion-acoustic fluctuations in high-temperature laser plasmas using multiple wavelength Thomson-scattering

Description: The dispersion of ion-acoustic fluctuations has been measured using a novel technique that employed multiple color Thomson scattering to measure the frequency spectrum for two separate thermal ion-acoustic fluctuations with significantly different wave vectors. The plasma fluctuations are shown to become dispersive with increasing electron temperature. They demonstrate that this technique allows a time resolved local measurement of electron density and temperature in inertial confinement fusion plasmas.
Date: May 18, 2005
Creator: Froula, D H; Davis, P; Divol, L; Ross, J S; Meezan, N; Price, D et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Laser Beam Propagation through Inertial Confinement Fusion Hohlraum Plasmas

Description: A study of the relevant laser-plasma interaction processes has been performed in long-scale length plasmas that emulate the plasma conditions in indirect drive inertial confinement fusion targets. Experiments in this high-temperature (T{sub e} = 3.5 keV), dense (n{sub e} = 0.5 - 1 x 10{sup -3}) hohlraum plasma have demonstrated that blue 351-nm laser beams produce less than 1% total backscatter resulting in transmission greater than 90% for ignition relevant laser intensities (I < 2 x 10{sup 15} W cm{sup -2}). The bulk plasma conditions have been independently characterized using Thomson scattering where the peak electron temperatures are shown to scale with the hohlraum heater beam energy in the range from 2 keV to 3.5 keV. This feature has allowed us to determine the thresholds for both backscattering and filamentation instabilities; the former measured with absolutely calibrated full aperture backscatter and near backscatter diagnostics and the latter with a transmitted beam diagnostics. Comparing the experimental results with detailed gain calculations for the onset of significant laser scattering processes shows that these results are relevant for the outer beams in ignition hohlraum experiments corresponding to a gain threshold for stimulated Brillouin scattering of 15. By increasing the gas fill density in these experiments further accesses inner beam ignition hohlraum conditions. In this case, stimulated Raman scattering dominates the backscattering processes. They show that scattering is small for gains smaller than 20, which can be achieved through proper choice of the laser beam intensity.
Date: October 26, 2006
Creator: Froula, D. H.; Divol, L.; Meezan, N. B.; DIxit, S.; Neumayer, P.; Moody, J. D. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department