Free-Electron Lasers: Status and Applications

  title={Free-Electron Lasers: Status and Applications},
  author={Patrick Gerard O'Shea and Henry P. Freund},
  pages={1853 - 1858}
A free-electron laser consists of an electron beam propagating through a periodic magnetic field. Today such lasers are used for research in materials science, chemical technology, biophysical science, medical applications, surface studies, and solid-state physics. Free-electron lasers with higher average power and shorter wavelengths are under development. Future applications range from industrial processing of materials to light sources for soft and hard x-rays. 

Next-Generation X-Ray Free-Electron Lasers

  • A. Zholents
  • Physics
    IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics
  • 2012
Research frontiers for future free-electron lasers are discussed. Attention is given to ideas for improving the temporal coherence and obtaining subfemtosecond X-ray pulses. Improving brightness of

Atomic plasma excitations in the field of a soft x-ray laser

The interaction of atoms with short-wavelength radiation at ultra-high intensities is described by plasma excitation. In contrast to former works on optical radiation and ponderomotive motion of

Theory and design of microwave photonic free-electron lasers

Coherent electromagnetic waves are extensively used in various fields of research and many applications. Almost every part of the electromagnetic spectrum, ranging from radio waves to hard X-rays,

Coherence Limits of Free Electron Lasers

The e-beam and radiation wave dynamics in the radiating and nonradiating beam transport sections of free electron lasers (FELs) are analyzed in the collective regime by use of a single transverse


A new scheme for high-speed electro-optical conversions with potential application to data communication is investigated. As the core of investigation, a ring model utilizing relativistic electrons

Free-electron-laser-based biophysical and biomedical instrumentation

A survey of biophysical and biomedical applications of free-electron lasers (FELs) is presented. FELs are pulsed light sources, collectively operating from the microwave through the x-ray range. This

Exact Analytical Solution for Ultrafast Electron Emission Due to Two-Color Laser Fields

This paper presents an analytical model for ultrafast electron emission from a metal surface illuminated by two-color continuous laser fields. The exact solution is valid for arbitrary fundamental

Tuneable electron-beam-driven nanoscale light source

Recently demonstrated ‘light-wells’—free-electron-driven tuneable nanoscale light sources—generate optical photons as electrons travel down a nano-hole through a metal–dielectric multilayer

Generation of mega-electron-volt electron beams by an ultrafast intense laser pulse

Mega-electron-volt (MeV) electron emission from the interaction of an ultrafast (τ∼29 fs), intense (>1018 W/cm2) laser pulse with underdense plasmas has been studied. A beam of MeV electrons with a

Applications of Free-Electron Lasers in the Biological and Material Sciences¶

Abstract Free-Electron Lasers (FELs) collectively operate from the terahertz through the ultraviolet range and via intracavity Compton backscattering into the X-ray and gamma-ray regimes. FELs are



High-gain harmonic-generation free-electron laser

The approach uses a laser-seeded free-electron laser to produce amplified, longitudinally coherent, Fourier transform-limited output at a harmonic of the seed laser, with the ultimate goal of extending the approach to provide an intense, highly coherent source of hard x-rays.


The results of some experiments on millimeter wave and light generation by means of an undulator are described. After a brief survey of the theoretical background the design of a magnet system is

Observation of stimulated emission of radiation by relativistic electrons in a spatially periodic transverse magnetic field

Abstract : Gain has been observed at 10.6 micrometers due to stimulated emission of radiation by relativistic electrons in a spatially periodic transverse magnetic field. The magnitude of the

A millimeter and submillimeter wavelength free‐electron laser

Measurements of millimeter and submillimeter wavelength emission (240 GHz<ω/2π<470 GHz) from a free‐electron laser are reported. The laser operates as a superradiant amplifier and without an axial

Microwave radiation from a high-gain free-electron laser amplifier.

A high-gain, high-extraction-efficiency, linearly polarized free-electron laser amplifier has been operated at 34.6 GHz and results are in good agreement with linear models at small signal levels and nonlinear models at large signal levels.

First observation of self-amplified spontaneous emission in a free-electron laser at 109 nm wavelength

We present the first observation of self-amplified spontaneous emission (SASE) in a free-electron laser (FEL) in the vacuum ultraviolet regime at 109 nm wavelength (11 eV). The observed free-electron

Nonlinear harmonic generation in free-electron lasers

A three-dimensional nonlinear simulation code to treat multiple frequencies simultaneously is described and used to study nonlinear harmonic generation in free-electron lasers (FELs). Strong

Stimulated Emission of Bremsstrahlung in a Periodic Magnetic Field

The Weizsacker‐Williams method is used to calculate the gain due to the induced emission of radiation into a single electromagnetic mode parallel to the motion of a relativistic electron through a

Measurements of High Gain and Intensity Fluctuations in a Self-Amplified, Spontaneous-Emission Free-Electron Laser

An x-ray laser would offer a unique way to explore the structure of matter at the atomic and molecular scale. Among the various schemes proposed to reach this wavelength region, the free-electron


We report the first high-gain self-amplified spontaneous emission experiment at 15 {mu}m driven by a high-brightness 17-MeV electron beam. A change of two decades in the beam current yields an