Laser PET

This experiment aims at developing technologies enabling laser-plasma acceleration as a light-ion source for medical radioisotope production. The continuous operation of a laser-plasma radiation source requires the following developments:

• On-line monitoring of laser pulses focusing systems.
• High repetition rate plasma-acceleration targets.
• On-line monitoring of the ion pulses.

LaserPET promoted the construction of the Laser Laboratory for Acceleration and Applications (L2A2) at the University of Santiago de Compostela.
It uses two radiation sources: ions and x-rays.

Ion source

50 TW laser pulses focused in appropriate target materials will be used to accelerate protons and deuterons at energies up to around 10 MeV that will be guided to an activation target for the production of radioisotopes of interest for medical applications.

X-rays source

The 1 mJ laser beam pulsed at 1 kHz is used to produce a plasma-induced X-ray source. This source is used to implement techniques for optimizing the plasma excitation in the target material and design target materials for particle acceleration.

This source is also used to develop new imaging technologies based on phase contrast taking advantage of its high brightness and small dimension.