The Cockcroft Institute recently hosted a half day meeting on compact particle accelerators. The meeting, sponsored by the Institute of Physics Particle and Beams Group, focussed on compact medium energy particle accelerators and covered electrostatic, RF and laser based accelerator concepts. The meeting had a good mix of many accelerator physicists and engineers from all over the UK and around 40 people attended the meeting. Speakers from the Cockcroft Institute, Belfast, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Huddersfield, Strathclyde, CERN and Siemens gave several interesting talks on the state of the art in compact accelerators. The meeting was split into two sections, one focussing on "conventional" electrostatic and RF based accelerators and the other on "exotic" millimeter wave and laser based accelerators.
The "conventional" session was anything but, with talks on compact linacs, cyclotrons and FFAG's as well as some very novel compact accelerator concepts from Siemens. The meeting concluded with a lively discussion led by Mike Poole on limitations and other opportunities for compact accelerators.
The exotic session lived up to its name with talks on metamaterials, photonics, pseudospark sources, laser wakefield acceleration and proton acceleration through shining a laser on a target.