Three Berkeley Lab scientists – including ATAP research scientists Sam Barber and Lucas Brouwer – have been selected to receive funding through DOE’s 2023 Early Career Research Program (ECRP).

Short-haired person with glasses.Sam Barber is a research scientist in the Accelerator Technology & Applied Physics Division working on developing next-generation light sources using laser-plasma accelerators (LPAs). Particle accelerator-based light sources serve a robust community of scientific users who use these tools to conduct critical research in areas like biotechnology, quantum materials science, and matter under extreme conditions. LPAs offer a new approach to generating and accelerating charged particle beams that promise to substantially enhance the capabilities and future development of accelerator-based light sources. Barber’s ECRP project, “Extending the reach of light source facilities with precision laser plasma injectors,” develops concrete steps to extract the maximum potential of LPAs for light sources and provides a blueprint for their integration into existing and future light source facilities. In addition, Barber received FY23 Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) funding for a project entitled “Optimizing High-Brightness Electron Beams from Laser Plasma Accelerators Using Machine Learning Approaches.” That work will develop the tools needed to efficiently characterize and optimize electron beams generated by LPAs.

Short-haired person wearing a suit jacket.Lucas Brouwer is a research scientist in the Accelerator Technology & Applied Physics Division who works on superconducting magnet science and applications. Future experiments in high energy physics require new particle accelerators with an unprecedented need for rapid, high-power acceleration. Brouwer’s ECRP project, “Fixed-Field Superconducting Magnets for Rapid, High Power Acceleration of Muons and Protons,” aims to help meet these demands by developing advances in fixed-field acceleration, in which alternating gradient magnet structures are employed to transport beams of different energy without magnetic field change. His research will address technology gaps through optimization and testing of a novel superconducting magnet tailored for fixed-field acceleration. Brouwer also received FY23 Accelerator Stewardship funding for a project entitled “High-Temperature Superconducting Magnets for Achromatic Proton Therapy Gantries.” That work will focus on testing a prototype superconducting magnet with the potential to reduce the overall cost of treatment facilities and enable faster treatment modalities.

Learn More about this years Berkeley Lab DOE Early Career Award winners:

Berkeley Lab Researchers Receive DOE Early Career Research Awards
August 4, 2023 / Berkeley Lab News Center

DOE Awards $135 Million For Groundbreaking Research By 93 Early Career Scientists
August 4, 2023 / U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) press release