The 10 Petawatt Upgrade Proposal For The Vulcan High-Power Laser
A.Boyle, A.Kidd, C.Hernandez-Gomez, D.A.Pepler*, D.J.Robinson, E.J.Divall, I. O.Musgrave, P.Holligan (STFC/RAL)
The Vulcan Nd:Glass Laser Facility* at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK has had a long history of providing high profile science with an International reputation in the field of plasma physics, predominately for a university based user community. Current capabilities of Vulcan include multiple infrared (1.053 micron) beamlines operating in the few hundred picoseconds to several nanoseconds regime with a total energy of up to 1.8kJ, synchronised with a single Petawatt class (10^15W, 500J, 500fs) beamline capable of being focussed to an intensity of 10^21W/cm^2. It is proposed to significantly enhance Vulcan with the provision of an additional 10 Petawatt (300J in 30fs) beamline capable of generating intensities of 10^23W/cm^2 ' synchronous with the existing 1 PW system. This paper will provide an overview of and the challenges for the designs of the 6 year £25M upgrade project**, in terms of the laser, the high speed timing and synchronisation requirements as well as the computer control systems.
* http://www.clf.rl.ac.uk/Facilities/vulcan/laser.htm** http://www.clf.rl.ac.uk/Facilities/vulcan/projects/10pw/10pw_index.htm