Combining Lasers and Accelerators to Train the next Generation of Researchers

The LA³NET consortium held an Advanced School on Laser Applications at Accelerators between 29 September and 3 October 2014. The event was hosted by the Spanish Pulsed Lasers Centre (CLPU) in Salamanca, Spain and attracted over 70 participants from all over the world.

The school was opened by Director Prof. Luis Roso and Dr. Enrique Conejero Jarque from the University of Salamanca with introductions on behalf of the host institutes. This was followed by a brief overview of LA³NET before the main lecture program started. The first day included talks about an introducing to lasers, the history of accelerator development in Europe, accelerator applications, as well as beam generation, acceleration and diagnostics – all given by internationally renowned lecturers.



Day two included lectures on laser ion sources, photo injectors and Free Electron Lasers (FELs), in addition to a two-hour study session giving delegates a chance for a hands-on look at some of the topics covered. An outreach talk about “attosecond science” by Prof. Luis Plaja in the evening on the main University of Salamanca campus attracted more than 100 students from the university and local high schools in addition to the school participants.

The following days covered advanced topics in ion and electron acceleration, commonly used simulation codes for accelerator design and optimization, as well as industry applications of accelerators and lasers. This was complemented by a Laserlab-sponsored visit of the facilities at CLPU, a second study session and a lively poster display and industry exhibition, sponsored byDanfysik. The School drew to a close with talks on THz applications, compact X-ray sources and the Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) project. The School stimulated many fruitful discussions throughout the week and was an excellent addition to the many scientific events the network has organized to date. All presentations can be found on the School’s Indico site.

The LA³NET project is coordinated by the Cockcroft Institute/University of Liverpool and led byProfessor Carsten P. Welsch with assistance in delivery from Dr. Rob Ashworth and the EU TEAM of the Cockcroft Institute. LA3NET is indebted to CLPU staff and in particular Ms. Yaiza Cortés for the local organization and support. The effort of all lecturers for their hard work and excellent contribution to make the School such a success is also appreciated.


The LA³NET project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 289191.


Marie Curie International Training Networks aim to improve career perspectives of early-stage researchers in both public and private sectors, thereby making research careers more attractive to young people. This will be achieved through a trans-national networking mechanism, aimed at structuring the existing high quality initial research training capacity throughout Member States and associated countries. In particular, they aim to add to the employability of the recruited researchers through exposure to both academia and enterprise, thus extending the traditional academic research training setting and eliminating cultural and other barriers to mobility. Grants are awarded through a highly competitive process.