Theory for the CEBAF infrared and shipboard FELs
Clark, Darwin L.
Colson, William B.
Neighbours. John R.
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The continuing development of the free electron laser (FEL) as a powerful and versatile source of coherent radiation steadily drives toward the goal of high efficiency and broad tenability at shorter wavelengths. New experiments provide significant data and insight for analysis by theoreticians and experimentalists. Two important areas to study are about electron pulse effects, and the dynamics of optical mode distortion by intense electron beam currents. The initial part of this thesis examines one aspect of the projected task of FEL application as a military weapon. The advantages of the FEL over other directed energy sources are detailed, as well as the challenge presented by the effects of the marine atmosphere to high energy laser propagation. The remainder of this thesis examines several effects of long wavelength FELs. Chapter IV examines the proposed parameters of the CEBAF IR FEL, and the analysis leads to predictions describing system performance. Chapter V examines the effects of single pass optical mode distortion for FELs with narrow electron beams. Single-mode theory states that gain is proportional to the product of electron beam current and filling factor, but three dimensional simulations show that gain is a function of electron beam filling factor alone. Also examined is a phenomenon of destructive interference of light in the FEL undulator. Chapter VI extends the analysis of the relationship of gain and beam size to include multiple passes of laser light through the laser resonator. This affirms the general gain relationship, where gain is a function of electron beam filling factor, and also further explores the phenomena of destructive interference within the optical mode.
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