Scientists have created a pocket particle accelerator that accelerates electrons to 99.99% of the .
Researchers have developed a compact particle accelerator that, using a laser, can accelerate electron beams up to 99.99% of the speed of light.
To achieve this result, scientists from the University of Manchester have developed a special metal structure covered with layers of quartz thinner than a human hair, as well as light pulses in the terahertz range. The generated radiation exists in an ideal millimeter-scale wavelength mode, which is well suited for accelerating particles with a high level of charge.
The main problem was to match the speed of the accelerating THz field with the speed of the electron beam almost to the speed of light, and also to prevent the initially lower speed of the terahertz pulse propagating through the structure. Scientists have solved this problem by developing a unique radiation source that generates longer pulses containing only a narrow frequency range..
Researchers are already working to increase the energy of the radiation source when maintaining the quality of the beam. According to them, the technology will replace kilometer accelerators worth billions of dollars, with devices only a few meters long.
text: Ilya Bauer, photo: University of Manchester