Pair filamentation and laser scattering in beam-driven QED cascades

Kenan Qu, Alec Griffith, Nathaniel J. Fisch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


We report the observation of longitudinal filamentation of an electron-positron pair plasma in a beam-driven QED cascade. The filaments are created in the "pair-reflection"regime, where the generated pairs are partially stopped and reflected in the strong laser field. The density filaments form near the center of the laser pulse and have diameters similar to the laser wavelength. They develop and saturate within a few laser cycles and do not induce sizable magnetostatic fields. We rule out the onset of two-stream instability or Weibel instability and attribute the origin of pair filamentation to laser ponderomotive forces. The small plasma filaments induce strong scattering of laser energy to large angles, serving as a signature of collective QED plasma dynamics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number035208
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability


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