We present full-scale simulations of grating-style dielectric laser accelerator structures operating in in the high gradient regime. We show good agreement with experimental results, as well as the internal dynamics of the acceleration which are not directly measurable in experiments.
Recently, dielectric laser-driven accelerator structures based on dual grating configurations have been demonstrated to achieve gradients in excess of 0.6 GV/m. The particle dynamics in these experiments are complicated because a significant fraction of the beam passes through the structure material, and because the structure is driven with a single laser pulse, particles can be driven transversely into and out of the material. In this presentation, we describe full scale simulations, using the Vorpal simulation engine, that include these phenomena and match experimental parameters. We show how the simulation data confirm the high gradients inferred from experimental measurements, as well as the optical phase dependence of the acceleration. We discuss the computational methods used for the key material interactions, namely bremsstrahlung and energy straggling. We show the results, including comparison with experimental energy spectra. We discuss the contributions to the spectrum from particles traversing the vacuum gap and those passing through the material.
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