Application of next Generation Accelerators

  • Barlow, Roger, (CoI)
  • Kirkby, Karen Joy (CoI)
  • Borghesi, Marco (CoI)
  • Jaroszynski, Dino Anthony (PI)

Project: ResearchResearch Council


The innovative accelerator techniques which have been/are explored by the BT programmes linked to this bid lead to particle beams with unique characteristics. Two of the BT projects (ALPHA-X and LIBRA) have investigated particle beams accelerated by intense laser pulses. Laser-produced radiation beams have unique characteristics, not attainable using existing sources (i.e. accelerators or nuclear reactors). The small emission size and ultra-short duration of these sources lend enormous potential for high-resolution imaging. This is augmented by the fact that each laser shot produces a large number of particles or photons with high directionality making them intrinsically high-luminosity sources. By varying the irradiated sample, one can accelerate beams of electrons, protons, heavier ions using the same system. Huge advances of the BT programmes: ALPHA-X (controlled acceleration to 1 GeV, synchrotron source demonstration, gamma-ray source, high quality beam production, etc.), LIBRA (laser-based acceleration of ions, demonstration of new acceleration mechanisms, application of ions in radiobiology and plasma radiography) and BASROC (construction of the world's first non-scaling FFAG, design of a proton therapy accelerator based FFAGs, new possibilities for Accelerator Driven Subcritical Reactor (ADSR) systems, and systematic understanding of how cells react to ionising radiation). These new technologies are giving rise to new applications - and only the tip of the iceberg is evident. This is creating a strong growth in demand for highly trained scientists, both to contribute at a PDRA level and provide the permanent staff needed to advance applications of the sources. Furthermore, many commercial opportunities, in a competitive environment, are now being investigated, which will ultimately lead to a need for more trained scientists. The systems and techniques employed to accelerate particles are intimately connected with their applications. The accelerator designer must be aware of the application to effectively exploit the beams. Conversely, users also needs to know how the beams are produced. An optimal way of achieving this is to "embed" the user in the groups developing the technology. We propose to create a cohort of trained "embedded" experts in the application of accelerator beams, who are proficient in accelerator science and technology.
Effective start/end date1/10/1130/09/18