Three new research projects funded at LOA

In addition to Adrien Leblanc’s ERC starting grant, three other new research projects are launched at LOA:

FemtoDose: (ANR collaborative research project)

The ANR is funding the FemtoDose project with 298 k€ over 4 years. This project is the result of a collaboration between the experimental physicist Adrien Leblanc from LOA’s UPX group and the theoretical and simulation physicist Henri Vincenti from LIDyL, CEA Saclay. Their objective is to develop a new electron accelerator design by laser-plasma interaction in order to increase the capacity of this type of accelerator. The final goal is to use this powerful source to study, with the help of Alessandro Flacco (APPLI group, LOA), the temporal effects of dose deposition by relativistic electrons in biological tissues.

Left: Experimental diagram of the combination of acceleration in a laser-plasma wakefield created in a gas jet with a plasma mirror injector. Right: Illustrative frame from a numerical simulation.

BANDITO: Boosting AttosecoND IntensiTy with plasma mirrors (ANR research project)

The ANR supports with 514 k€ over 4 years the BANDITO project, coordinated by Stefan Haessler of the PCO group at LOA. This group, with the help of LOA colleagues Philippe Zeitoun, Adrien Leblanc and Igor Andriyash, want to exploit the temporal compression and resulting intensity-boost of ultra-intense laser waves upon reflection off a plasma mirror.

A key challenge will be to refocus the reflected laser beam with sufficient spatio-temporal accuracy. The researchers hope to demonstrate a record intensity for sub-femtosecond pulses. In parallel, they will develop a liquid foil target that could eliminate the critical limitations encountered with solid targets.

MAGNETOQUANT: (CIEDS research project)

The MAGNETOQUANT project, coordinated by Davide Boschetto of the APPLI group, is funded with 600 k€ over 4 years by the ‘Centre Interdisciplinaire d’Etudes pour la Défense’ of the Institut Polytechnique de Paris.  It aims to study the ultrafast dynamics of electrons trapped either in a crystal defect or in a confined structure. In addition, we plan to study the dynamics of electron-phonon and spin-phonon interactions under the effect of external magnetic fields. The study of these coupling mechanisms between different degrees of freedom of the crystal opens the door to applications in high resolution magnetometry with many societal applications.