Radioisotopes production using lasers: from basic science to applications

M. R. D. Rodrigues, A. Bonasera, M. Scisciò, J. A. Pérez-Hernández, M. Ehret, F. Filippi, P. L. Andreoli, M. Huault, H. Larreur, D. Singappuli, D. Molloy, D. Raffestin, M. Alonzo, G. G. Rapisarda, D. Lattuada, G. L. Guardo, C. Verona, Fe. Consoli, G. Petringa, A. McNamee, M. La Cognata, S. Palmerini, T. Carriere, M. Cipriani, G. Di Giorgio, G. Cristofari, R. De Angelis, G. A. P. Cirrone, D. Margarone, L. Giuffrida, D. Batani, P. Nicolai, K. Batani, R. Lera, L. Volpe, D. Giulietti, S. Agarwal, M. Krupka, S. Singh, Fa. Consoli
Nuclear Experiment, Nuclear Experiment (nucl-ex), Applied Physics (, Plasma Physics (physics.plasm-ph)
2023-12-14 00:00:00
Laser technologies improved after the understanding of the Chirped Pulse Amplification (CPA) which allows energetic laser beams to be compressed to tens of femtosecond (fs) pulse durations and focused to few $\mu$m. Protons of tens of MeV can be accelerated using for instance the Target Normal Sheath Acceleration (TNSA) method and focused on secondary targets. In such conditions, nuclear reactions can occur and radioisotopes relevant for medical purposes be produced. High repetition lasers can be used to produce enough isotopes for medical applications. This route is competitive to conventional methods mostly based on accelerators. In this paper we study the production of $^{67}$Cu, $^{63}$Zn, $^{18}$F and $^{11}$C currently used in positron emission tomography (PET) and other applications. At the same time, we study the reaction $^{10}$B(p,$\alpha$)$^{7}$Be and $^{70}$Zn(p,4n)$^{67}$Ga to put further constraints to the proton distributions at different angles and to the reaction $^{11}$B(p,$\alpha$)$^{8}$Be relevant for energy production. The experiment was performed at the 1 petawatt (PW) laser facility at Vega III located in Salamanca-Spain. Angular distributions of radioisotopes in the forward (with respect to the laser direction) and backward directions were measured using a High Purity Germanium Detector (HPGE). Our results are reasonably reproduced by the numerical estimates following the approach of Kimura et al. (NIMA637(2011)167)
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