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      AWAKE, The Advanced Proton Driven Plasma Wakefield Acceleration Experiment at CERN

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          Abstract

          The Advanced Proton Driven Plasma Wakefield Acceleration Experiment (AWAKE) aims at studying plasma wakefield generation and electron acceleration driven by proton bunches. It is a proof-of-principle R&D experiment at CERN and the world's first proton driven plasma wakefield acceleration experiment. The AWAKE experiment will be installed in the former CNGS facility and uses the 400 GeV/c proton beam bunches from the SPS. The first experiments will focus on the self-modulation instability of the long (rms ~12 cm) proton bunch in the plasma. These experiments are planned for the end of 2016. Later, in 2017/2018, low energy (~15 MeV) electrons will be externally injected to sample the wakefields and be accelerated beyond 1 GeV. The main goals of the experiment will be summarized. A summary of the AWAKE design and construction status will be presented.

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          Plasma Wakefield Acceleration with a Modulated Proton Bunch

          The plasma wakefield amplitudes which could be achieved via the modulation of a long proton bunch are investigated. We find that in the limit of long bunches compared to the plasma wavelength, the strength of the accelerating fields is directly proportional to the number of particles in the drive bunch and inversely proportional to the square of the transverse bunch size. The scaling laws were tested and verified in detailed simulations using parameters of existing proton accelerators, and large electric fields were achieved, reaching 1 GV/m for LHC bunches. Energy gains for test electrons beyond 6 TeV were found in this case.
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            Plasma physics, High energy & Particle physics

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