A robust plasma-based laser amplifier via stimulated Brillouin scattering

E Alves, Raoul Trines*, Katherine Humphrey, Robert Bingham, R Alan Cairns, F Fiuza, R Fonseca, Luis Silva

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Brillouin amplification in plasma is more resilient to fluctuations in the laser and plasma param- eters than Raman amplification, making it an attractive alternative to Raman amplification. In this work, we focus on high plasma densities, n0 > ncr/4, where stimulated Raman scattering is not possible and laser beam filamentation is the dominant competing process. Through analytic theory and multi-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we identify a parameter regime for which Brillouin amplification can be efficient while maintaining filamentation of the probe at a controlled level. We demonstrate pump-to-probe compression ratios of up to 72 and peak amplified probe fluences over 1 kJ/cm2 with ≃ 50% efficiency. High pulse quality is maintained through control of parasitic filamentation, enabling operation at large beam diameters. Provided the pump and probe pulse diameters can be increased to 1 mm, our results suggest that Brillouin amplification can be used to produce sub-picosecond pulses of petawatt power.
Original languageEnglish
Article number114004
Number of pages9
JournalPlasma Physics and Controlled Fusion
Issue number11
Early online date11 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


  • Brillouin amplification
  • Parametric instabilities
  • Laser-plasma interactions
  • High energy density physics


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