PRELIMINARY RESULTS FROM THE UCLA/SLAC ULTRA-HIGH GRADIENT CERENKOV WAKEFIELD ACCELERATOR EXPERIMENT
International Journal of Modern Physics A
The first phase of an experiment to study the performance of dielectric Cerenkov wakefield accelerating structures at extremely high gradients in the GV/m range has been completed. This experiment takes advantage of the unique SLAC FFTB electron beam and its demonstrated ultra-short pulse lengths and high currents (e.g., σz = 20 µm at Q = 3 nC). The FFTB electron beam has been successfully focused down and sent through varying lengths of fused silica capillary tubing with two different sizes:
... different sizes: ID = 200 µm / OD = 325 µm and ID = 100 µm / OD = 325 µm. The pulse length of the electron beam was varied in the range 20 µm < σz < 100 µm which produced a range of electric fields between 2 and 20 GV/m at the inner surface of the dielectric tubes. We observed a sharp increase in optical emissions from the capillaries in the middle part of this surface field range which we believe indicates the transition between sustainable field levels and breakdown. If this initial interpretation is correct, the surfaced fields that were sustained equate to on axis accelerating field of several GV/m. In future experiments we plan to collect and measure coherent Cerenkov radiation emitted from the capillary tube to gain more information about the strength of the accelerating fields.