Particle accelerators and light sources are main tools for discovering the fundamental constituents of our universe, the inner workings of biological organisms, and the response of matter inside stars and planets.
Miniaturizing these large-scale devices would be a revolutionary leap with major scientific and societal implications and bring such exclusive scientific questions directly into the many smaller scale laboratories in universities and hospitals around the world.
The incredibly high accelerating fields in plasma accelerators and light sources hold great promise towards this goal, but several questions remain un-answered: can plasma accelerator light sources reach the brightness of free electron lasers? Can we accelerate ultra-low emittance positron bunches in plasmas, in conditions that are directly relevant for a particle collider? Are the ultra-high gradient fields in plasma suitable to accelerate non-relativistic particles, such as muons and protons?
As answers lie beyond the scope of analytical models, HPC is the ideal research tool to provide meaningful answers and guide experiments.
Our project joins recent advances in optics, photon science and plasma physics to investigate these questions which will lead us towards previously unexplored phenomena in plasma accelerators and light sources.