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Commissioning of the electron injector for the AWAKE experiment

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  • S.-Y. Kim
  • S. Doebert
  • O. Apsimon
  • R. Apsimon
  • G. Burt
  • M. Dayyani
  • S. Gessner
  • I. Gorgisyan
  • E. Granados
  • S. Mazzoni
  • J.T. Moody
  • M. Turner
  • B. Williamson
  • M. Chung
Article number163194
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>11/02/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Number of pages7
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date29/11/19
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The advanced wakefield experiment (AWAKE) at CERN is the first proton beam-driven plasma wakefield acceleration experiment. The main goal of AWAKE RUN 1 was to demonstrate seeded self-modulation (SSM) of the proton beam and electron witness beam acceleration in the plasma wakefield. For the AWAKE experiment, a 10-meter-long Rubidium-vapor cell together with a high-power laser for ionization was used to generate the plasma. The plasma wakefield is driven by a 400 GeV/c proton beam extracted from the super proton synchrotron (SPS), which undergoes a seeded self-modulation process in the plasma. The electron witness beam used to probe the wakefields is generated from an S-band RF photo-cathode gun and then accelerated by a booster structure up to energies between 16 and 20 MeV. The first run of the AWAKE experiment revealed that the maximum energy gain after the plasma cell is 2 GeV, and the SSM mechanism of the proton beam was verified. In this paper, we will present the details of the AWAKE electron injector. A comparison of the measured electron beam parameters, such as beam size, energy, and normalized emittance, with the simulation results was performed.