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Crystal Channel Collider: Ultra-high Energy and Luminosity in the Next Century


We assume that, independent of any near-term discoveries, the continuing goal of experimental high-energy physics (HEP) will be to achieve ultra-high center-of-mass energies, possibly approaching the Planck scale (1O28 eV), in the next century. To progress to these energies in such a brief span of time will require a radical change in accelerator and collider technology. High-gradient acceleration of charged particles along crystal channels and the possibility of colliding them in these same strong-focusing atomic channels have been separately investigated in earlier proposals. Here we expand further upon the concepts of emittance damping and plasma wave generation to explore a new paradigm for HEP machines early in the next century: the crystal channel collider. Energy and emittance limitations in natural crystal accelerators are determined. The technologies needed to begin experimental research on this accelerator concept are now emerging. The excitation of 1 to 100 GV/cm plasma waves in semiconductor and metal crystals by either the laser wakefield or side-injected laser techniques appears experimentally feasible with near-term lasers.

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